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VIDEO FEATURE: Heck Debates Malcolm on Porn & Santorum 

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Wednesday, August 31 2011

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A few decades ago, under heavy pressure from the guerilla tactics of homosexual activists, the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from their official chronicle of mental illness known as the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders).  They did so not based on empirical data or scientific evidence, but rather on the basis of the emotion of a political movement that was becoming increasingly vocal.

 

 

The argument went this way: because we homosexuals feel that this is natural behavior for us, because we feel we were born this way, to categorize who we are as akin to a mental illness is unfairly discriminatory and subjects us to disgrace.

 

Of course, the reality was that "who they were" was not being characterized that way, but rather "what they felt motivated and tempted to do" was being characterized that way.  Big difference.  And the moment the APA gave in to their demands, they opened up the floodgates to similar claims by people engaging in all sorts of other behaviors previously considered deviant.  The strategy for these other groups was clear: claim you were born with natural urges towards whatever vice you participate in, and then claim that to categorize you as "mentally ill" on that basis is hurtful and bigoted.

 

And guess what's in the news now?  The Daily Caller reports:

If a small group of psychiatrists and other mental health professionals have their way at a conference this week, pedophiles themselves could play a role in removing pedophilia from the American Psychiatric Association's bible of mental illnesses ? the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), set to undergo a significant revision by 2013.  Critics warn that their success could lead to the decriminalization of pedophilia.

 

The August 17 Baltimore conference is sponsored by B4U-ACT, a group of pro-pedophile mental health professionals and sympathetic activists.  According to the conference brochure, the event will examine "ways in which minor-attracted persons [pedophiles] can be involved in the DSM 5 revision process" and how the popular perceptions of pedophiles can be reframed to encourage tolerance.

Notice that we even have a euphemistic name-change to accompany the demands of these pedophiles.  They are no longer child molesters, they are minor-attracted persons.  LGBTs, meet MAPs.  And it's pretty clear the MAPs have learned how to decriminalize their deviant sexual behavior from their trailblazing brethren, the LGBTs:

B4U-ACT has been active attacking the APA's definition of pedophilia in the run up to the conference, denouncing its description of "minor-attracted persons" as "inaccurate" and "misleading" because the current DSM links pedophilia with criminality.

 

"It is based on data from prison studies, which completely ignore the existence of those who are law-abiding," said Howard Kline, science director of B4U-ACT, in a July 25, 2011 press release. "The proposed new diagnostic criteria specify ages and frequencies with no scientific basis whatsoever."

 

The press release announced a letter the group sent to the APA criticizing its approach, and inviting its leaders to participate in the August 17 conference. "The DSM should meet a higher standard than that," Kline continued. "We can help them, because we are the people they are writing about."

In a sick way, it is oddly humorous how anyone can attempt to deny the reality that there is a larger movement towards sexual anarchy that these various groups each play their own part in.  As one gets normalized and decriminalized, the next group follows the exact same path, enacts the exact same strategy, uses the exact same legal arguments, and eventually - no matter how deviant the behavior was once viewed - achieves the exact same results.

 

For years now I (and many others like me) have been criticized for pointing out that the day is coming when pedophilia will be decriminalized or at least, the laws which forbid it will be "revisited and tweaked" to be less discriminatory.  And we have pointed out that the logic they will follow to achieve this wicked end will be the very same logic our culture has accepted for every previous movement like homosexuality and transgenderism and polygamy.  And, here we are...notice the language and the tactics:

Several speakers at the August 17 conference, including B4U-ACT director of operations Dr. Richard Kramer and conference keynote speaker Dr. Fred Berlin, of the Johns Hopkins University, have actively opposed sex offender notification laws.

 

 

"What purpose does calling someone a ?pervert' or ?predator' serve anyway, other than to express contempt and hatred?" Kramer wrote in a March 14, 2009 blog entry on the website ReformSexOffenderLaws.org. "How is this productive? It certainly doesn't protect children. I would urge all SO [sex offender] activists to listen to their own message: Stop buying into and promoting false stereotypes. Stop demonizing a whole class of people, and start learning the facts."

 

Berlin has similarly compared society's reaction to pedophilia to that of homosexuality prior to the landmark 2003 Lawrence v. Texas decision that decriminalized sodomy.

 

B4U-ACT's own website puts Berlin's views front and center. "Just as has been the case historically with homosexuality," he writes, "society is currently addressing the matter of pedophilia with a balance that is far more heavily weighted on the side of criminal justice solutions than on the side of mental health solutions."

As I've said repeatedly: when you tear down your moral barriers for sexual conduct in the name of tolerance, you simply can't throw them back into the ground to stop the next group of folks who base their arguments on the exact same logic you've already accepted for the previous group.

 

If "discriminating against people" who are attracted to the same-sex is improper, "discriminating against people" who are attracted to minors must be as well.  Or, we could always come to our senses and realize that discrimination against certain kinds of behavior is not immoral or wrong, it's necessary for a free society to survive.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Wednesday, August 31 2011

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Representative Andre Carson of Indianapolis is a total disgrace.  There's just no way of candy-coating this one.  Beyond just being wrong, the man is extraordinarily uninformed about the vast majority of issues the federal government is dealing with - a reality that emerges every time he grants an interview.  And he seems to be incapable of hiring anyone to his staff that can at least make it appear otherwise.

 

But beyond embarrassing his constituents with his lack of knowledge, Carson seems to be proficient at nothing more than slimy race-baiting...something he does with frightening regularity.  It may not be a comfortable reality to acknowledge, but if we're truly wanting to live in a color blind society, it's important to call out the folks who are preventing it.  Andre Carson is certainly one of them.

 

 

You will recall that Carson (along with Rep. John Lewis) lied to reporters about tea party members hurling racial epithets at them as they taunted the protestors by walking through them straight into the Capitol building to take their now infamous healthcare vote.  Despite thousands of hours worth of video and audio of the event, not a single racial slur was recorded.  Not one.  Then, Carson and Lewis's stories and tales of how it unfolded started contradicting each other, and it quickly became apparent that the two had simply made it up.  At that point, the media quickly stopped investigating the incident.

 

Well, Representative Carson is at it again.  Still incapable of coming up with any singular idea, platform, or legislative policy worth talking about, Carson has gone back to the well of what he does best: stirring racial discord.  The pathetic Congressman has once again gone after tea party Americans, this time injecting extraordinarily offensive imagery to his wild claims:

A leading member of the Congressional Black Caucus is standing by incendiary language he used at a recent town hall when he charged that tea-party aligned members of Congress view African Americans as "second-class citizens" and would like to see them "hanging on a tree."

 

Rep. Andre Carson's (D-Ind.) office confirmed that the lawmaker made the remarks at an Aug. 22 CBC Job Tour event in Miami and said that the comments were "prompted in response to frustration voiced by many in Miami and in his home district in Indianapolis regarding Congress' inability to bolster the economy."

 

"The tea party is protecting its millionaire and oil company friends while gutting critical services that they know protect the livelihood of African-Americans, as well as Latinos and other disadvantaged minorities," Carson spokesman Jason Tomcsi said. "We are talking about child nutrition, job creation, job training, housing assistance, and Head Start, and that is just the beginning. A child without basic nutrition, secure housing, and quality education has no real chance at a meaningful and productive life."

 

"So, yes, the congressman used strong language because the Tea Party agenda jeopardizes our most vulnerable and leaves them without the ability to improve their economic standing," Tomcsi added.

 

A video of Carson making the remarks began circulating online Tuesday night. The clip is a compilation of footage from several CBC town halls during the August recess and bears the logo of The Blaze, a Web site launched by conservative commentator Glenn Beck.

 

"I'm saying right now, under (CBC) Chairman Emanuel Cleaver's leadership, we have seen change in Congress ... but the tea party is stopping that change," Carson said at the event, according to the video. "And this is beyond symbolic change. This is the effort that we're seeing, of Jim Crow."

 

"Some of these folks in Congress right now would love to see us as second-class citizens," Carson continued. "Some of them in Congress right now with this tea party movement would love to see you and me ? I'm sorry, Tamron ? hanging on a tree."

 

"Tamron" appears to be a reference to MSNBC's Tamron Hall, whowas moderating the town hall meeting.

The media should be demanding Carson to name just one member of the tea party movement that has ever called for such a heinous act to take place.  If Carson is going to hurl an accusation that these Americans are wanting to lynch blacks, surely he must be expected to provide some kind of evidence for it.  That is way too aggressive and offensive of an accusation to simply be the product of hyperbole and bluster.  If Carson can't identify anyone who has made such a proposition, he's guilty of slander against millions of his fellow Americans and a number of his own constituents.

 

Of course these comments don't come in a vacuum.  Fellow Congressional Black Caucus member Maxine Waters recently told the tea party they could go "straight to Hell."

 

This is the class of the CBC and of Representative Andre Carson personally.  If others in their party don't step up to renounce them, and demand that they apologize for their aggressive and racially provocative accusations, they are just as slimy.

 

It's acceptable to disagree with your political opponents.  Suggesting they are racists who want to lynch blacks, however, goes beyond disagreement.  Without proof it is a mindless and outrageous slur that disgraces the speaker and all he claims to represent.  It was time for Andre Carson to find another line of work a long time ago.  This disgrace only reemphasizes the obvious.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 31 2011

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In elementary school parlance, this is called taking your ball and going home.  Not surprising to see the labor union crowd appealing to such mentality in their adult dealings:

In previous years, Republicans have worked the parade route, but this year they will not be allowed to take part. The parade is organized by local unions, which said Wisconsin Republicans "have openly attacked worker's rights."

 

Wisconsin politics - which hasn't been pretty of late - has made its way into a local Labor Day parade. The organizers of the Wausau Labor Day parade announced they would not let Republican lawmakers take part in the Sept. 5 display. The parade is organized by 30 local unions.


The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports:

In a statement, [Randy Radtke, president of the council,] added that the parade is intended to celebrate working men and women and what the labor movement has given them: weekends, a 40-hour workweek, child labor protection and a safe working environment.

"It should come as no surprise that organizers choose not to invite elected officials who have openly attacked worker's rights or stood idly by while their political party fought to strip public workers of their right to collectively bargain," Radtke said.

This is pathetic.  And embarrassing...not for the politicians uninvited, but for the adult human beings who actually told people they disagree with politically that they can't come to the parade.

 

Don't get me wrong, if you organize a parade you have every right to deny someone the opportunity to march in it.  I'm not suggesting that a violation of the law has taken place.  I'm simply suggesting this is a perfect depiction of the contemptuous attitudes and juvenile behavior that more Americans than ever before have come to associate with the labor union movement.  It's why labor unions have a lower approval rating than they've ever had, are constantly rated by polls as the least popular entities in the country, and why more workers than ever have (when given the chance) withdrawn their membership.

 

The public has come to see many of these labor unions as harboring an unnatural and unnecessary sense of entitlement that isn't reflective of "working men and women," but spoiled brats.  That's not to say that everyone in a labor union is that way - far from it, actually.  Many in labor unions are embarrassed by these kinds of silly antics, but join either out of a sense of compulsion or intimidation.

 

The people of Wisconsin legally elected their leaders...leaders who believed that the strain placed upon the state's budget by the demands made by public sector employee unions was excessive, and needed to be fixed.  So they fixed it.  And this is the reaction.

 

The suggestion that only those who are on board with labor union politics are "working men" has always been insulting.  Chances are the public will view this petty, "We're having a parade but you aren't invited" action in much the same way .  If Big Labor thought that they would be engendering public sympathy to their cause by this action, I imagine they will be sorely disappointed.  

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  4 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 31 2011

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I think Chris Matthews needs to offer some clarification.  Here was what he said on this program the other night:

CHRIS MATTHEWS: First up, the very fact of President Barack Obama is a resounding affirmation these two generations later of Dr. Martin Luther King's dream. It was 48 years ago today that Dr. King talked of an America that could truly be called a shining city on a hill. That dream seemed to be coming true three years ago today when the newly-nominated Barack Obama wove the promise of Dr. King into his appeal for the votes of all Americans.

 

(VIDEO CLIP OF BARACK OBAMA'S NOMINATION ACCEPTANCE SPEECH ON AUGUST 28, 2008)

 

MATTHEWS: Obama went on to win 43 percent of white votes in that fall's election, and that may sound low but Democrats really never win a white majority. Bill Clinton got 43 percent of votes, of white votes back in '96. Al Gore got just 42 percent, and John Kerry got only 41 percent of white votes in 2004. So Obama's 43 percent of white votes in 2008 was on the high end.

 

... 

 

 

MATTHEWS: But last November's shellacking of Democrats in the midterm elections came with a dramatic retreat. White voters deserted Democrats running for Congress. Democrats actually got only 37 percent of white votes last November - 37 percent.

 

It's all very worrying for the Obama reelection campaign because in the most recent NBC poll, he, the president, is down to just 36 percent of whites.

Are these two different stories, or is it all part of the same story?  The reason I'm asking is because the lead of this story is clearly about the fact that racism was not a factor in the 2008 election.  It's why Matthews made the MLK, Jr. tie in with his remarks about Obama's percentage of the white vote.

 

But then he transitioned to suggest that support among whites has dropped.  While that's very true, I have to wonder (particularly given the left's propensity for blaming any negatives for Obama on racism) if Matthews wasn't asserting that the drop in Obama's poll numbers is due to a resurgence of racism among whites.

 

If so, that is flatly absurd and represents all that is wrong with desperate liberals like Matthews trying to find any way to prop up Obama's failing presidency.  Any set of rational eyes looking at the job performance of Mr. O these last couple years could fully comprehend and conclude what it was that led to Obama's loss of support among any demographic. 

 

And notice that Matthews doesn't bother to show us the percentage of support Obama receives among blacks.  If it's just as high as it used to be, could we conclude that blacks are overlooking Obama's failures just because of his race?  Is that not racism worth talking about?  Or, if black support of Obama has dropped (which it has), is that somehow proof that blacks have become racist against blacks?

 

The obvious and responsible thing to do is to leave race out of the equation entirely, because it doesn't belong.  Matthews has no data upon which to hang such an assertion, so bringing it up only serves to fan the flames of racial discord - the exact opposite of Dr. King's dream.

 

Maybe Matthews wasn't really making that accusation, and it was just poor transitioning.  Or maybe he was wanting to make an under-the-table reference without saying it explicitly.  Either way, it's what we've come to expect from the left.  And it gets dumber and dumber every time it's asserted.  And to anyone paying attention, it demonstrates exactly who is race-obsessed, and providing an obstacle to achieving Dr. King's vision.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 30 2011

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The Daily Caller ran an interesting piece that follows up on a discussion we've had a couple times on the radio show: does academic achievement translate into a good president?  The topic came up on the radio program most recently after a local media group laughed off Rick Perry's candidacy due to his less than stellar academic career at Texas A&M.

 

 

I've shared what I think, and I'm pretty sure most Americans feel similarly...though I do believe that continued media pressure about the need for a brainiac in the White House is going to have some effect on people's perceptions in the long run.  Obviously this is all by design. The media create the notion that all Republican candidates are idiots or knuckle dragging Neanderthals, while a Democratic nominee is a thinking man.  This coincides with their drumbeat about book smarts being at the top of the list of presidential qualifications.  Do the math, and it isn't difficult to see what they wish to see come from that equation.

 

But a couple very prominent presidential historians have shed some light on this issue, concluding the very same thing I've been saying: some of our country's best leaders are those who might not have scored the highest on the SAT:

Presidential historian Richard Norton Smith, who is a scholar-in-residence in history and public policy at George Mason University, disagrees.  "I don't think there is a direct correlation between success in the classroom as tested by a grade book and success in the Oval Office," he told TheDC.

 

Smith explained that Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who is regularly ranked among America's greatest presidents by historians, had an "undistinguished" academic career but had a type of intelligence that was more important than book smarts.

 

"FDR had an incredible emotional intelligence. FDR read people, not books," Smith said. "His career in college was undistinguished, but then, frankly, you know, there were lots of ?Gentleman's C's' at Harvard in those days."  Smith continued: "What Roosevelt demonstrated from an early age was a capacity for leadership, and that is something that dramatically accelerated with age. It wasn't something he learned in a classroom. It is something he learned from life."

Smith wasn't alone.  Left-leaning presidential historian David Brinkley also agreed with the idea that our best presidents aren't necessarily the 'brightest:'

Rice University historian Douglas Brinkley told TheDC that he, too, rejects the idea of a correlation between academic success or brilliance with success in the presidency.  "Harry Truman never went to college and I think he's usually ranked number five of all-time presidents," Brinkley noted. "People like Lyndon Johnson, you know, who brought all these social programs, Medicaid, Medicare, the Civil Rights Act and all, had just gone to San Marcos College."

 

 

Conservative icon and National Review founder William F. Buckley, Jr. once quipped that he'd "rather entrust the government of the United States to the first 400 people listed in the Boston telephone directory than to the faculty of Harvard University." Buckley's quip raises the question: should Americans want academic geniuses leading them?

I don't know that I would necessarily go for the phone book government, but I get the point.  And I certainly agree with Buckley that it would be a dark day for America if the faculty of Harvard ever took the reins of power.  In the field of education, it has been a big establishment push of recent decades to note the "different intelligences" of different people.  In other words, "intelligence" is not just math ability.  It's funny how so many liberals forget that when it comes to evaluating presidential timber.

"What you want to succeed in the presidency is political smarts, and those are not always the same things as academic accomplishments," Smith argued. "The best evidence is the fact thate Reagan went through life exploiting the fact that he was underestimated. He was sufficiently comfortable in his own skin and he was shrewd enough to make it work for him."

As I've said before, if Reagan was a dunce, and Obama a genius, I think our measuring stick may be a tad bit unreliable.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 30 2011

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Last week I praised Herman Cain for his classy, witty and wise response to the accusation from vile left-winger Janeane Garofalo that he was merely a "person of color" being paid by Republican bosses to run, so as to deflect charges of racism against the party.  Cain, who would have been totally justified in calling Garofalo and her ilk out for their inherently evident racism, took it in stride and used it to instruct on the sorry state of the liberal mind.

 

 

I commented that I would like to think that in a similar situation I could have responded with such humor and mild-mannered-ness.  But more than likely, I'd have been a little more fiery.  I mean, how long must conservative minorities and proud unhyphenated Americans put up with this trash?

 

Chances are, my response would have looked a lot more like Michelle Malkin's beautiful dismantling of the "Progressives of Pallor":

And it's about time someone knocked these self-appointed Saviors of the Oppressed off their high horses.

 

Actress Janeane Garofalo ? a former comedian turned Republican-bashing sourpuss ? appeared on the Current TV talk show of disgraced former MSNBC host Keith Olbermann. Because she has no actual career achievements or noteworthy projects to discuss, the pair turned to one of their favorite topics: bashing the tea party movement, with an ample dish of vast-right-wing-conspiracy-mongering on the side.

 

Garofalo singled out GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain, a black businessman and grassroots favorite, because he is a "person of color." According to the starlet, Cain launched his 2012 bid "because he deflects the racism that is inherent in the Republican Party, the conservative movement, the tea party certainly. (In) the last 30 years, the Republican Party has been moving more and more to the right, but also race-baiting more."

 

She certainly knows about baiting. For the past six years, with gritted teeth and throbbing veins, she has indiscriminately attacked Republicans as "racist," "rednecks" and "partisan hacks who are always on the verge of punching somebody or always behave as if they've just been cut off in traffic." Projection for breakfast, anyone?

 

From the safety of her Tinseltown cocoon, she has lashed out bitterly at tea party activists as "teabagging rednecks" and assailed their fiscal conservative activism as "f***ing redneck d**chebaggery. Unmitigated d**chebaggery" ? all while complaining about the lack of civility in politics. In 2009, Garofalo ignored a personal invitation from Texas tea party activist Katrina Pearson and other black conservatives to attend one of their rallies and meet reality.

 

 

The last thing progressives of pallor want to deal with, you see, are "people of color" who think for themselves, refuse to be hyphenated Americans and reject left-wing orthodoxy on everything from entitlements to bailouts to Big Labor, immigration, social issues and racial preferences.

 

All of Garofalo's and Olbermann's non-white friends and colleagues (however few that may be) think the same slavishly homogenous thoughts they do about preserving the welfare state, coddling union thugs, opening up the borders and whitewashing the eugenics-grounded abortion racket. There couldn't possibly be minority conservatives who think otherwise. And if they do, the progressives of pallor comfort themselves, such aberrant creatures must only be able to embrace free-market principles because they were brainwashed, paid off or born stupid.

That, in and of itself, is an amazingly racially offensive position to take.  Yet liberals excuse themselves from such judgment.  Imagine that.  Malkin concluded her piece thusly:

I've heard more than 20 years of this oppressive windbaggery from do-gooder liberals who treat my unhyphenated American brothers and sisters and me as treacherous puppets for The Man. Their smug refusal to acknowledge free will, individual choice and true diversity of thought confirms that race-obsessed liberals remain the most unrepentant and odious racists of all.

Amen.  Well said, totally justified, and completely accurate.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 30 2011

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The Republicans of the House continue to fulfill promises that they made to the electorate in 2010 to take on waste and excess.  This time they are focusing on one of the most corrupt entities of all: the United Nations.

House Republicans are planning to introduce today legislation that seeks to force major changes at the United Nations, using as leverage the U.S.'s 22 percent contribution to the world body's operating budget.

 

The bill by Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the Republican chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, would require the UN to adopt a voluntary budget model in which countries selectively fund UN agencies rather than according to a set formula. It would end funding for Palestinian refugees, limit use of U.S. funds to only purposes outlined by Congress and stop contributions to peacekeeping operations until management changes are made.

 

...

 

 

Ros-Lehtinen had UN reform on her agenda even before the Florida congresswoman gained leadership of the committee in January, calling the New York-based body a "stew of corruption, mismanagement and negligence" in July 2010.

 

The U.S. pays 22 percent of the UN's regular operations budget and is assessed 27 percent of the peacekeeping budget. The U.S. payments totaled $3.35 billion in 2010, of which $2.67 billion was dedicated to the 16 peacekeeping operations worldwide, from South Sudan to Haiti.

Precisely.  And what we are funding is a corrupt organization that is made up of a majority of anti-Israel thugocracies that undermine the very values of our civilization at every turn.  Of course, those in America who oppose the founding values of our civilization aren't thrilled about the Republican move:

The bill's timing runs counter to the emergence of the administration's "Obama Doctrine" of working with others to address international issues, particularly those that don't pose an immediate security threat to the U.S., said Jeffrey Laurenti, a UN analyst at the Century Foundation, a New York-based economic, political and social research foundation.

 

"After two years of the closest and most productive cooperation in decades at the UN between Washington and the rest of the international community, it is hard to understand why Republicans in the House of Representatives are determined to poison the well," Laurenti wrote in a blog post yesterday.

Actually, I think any fair analysis of the relationship between the UN and the U.S. for the last several decades will reveal that it wasn't us who poisoned the well.  This is merely a move to stop drinking so much of the poison.

 

There's much to like in this legislation being sponsored by Ros-Lehtinen, but the best may be this:

The legislation would also limit the use of U.S. contributions to only the specific purposes outlined by Congress and would withhold U.S. funding for any UN agency that upgrades the status of the Palestinian observer mission or any agency that helps Palestinian refugees.

 

The bill would also withhold funding for the UN Human Rights Council until the State Department can certify that it doesn't include members subject to Security Council sanctions, under Security Council-mandated investigations for human rights abuses or are state sponsors of terrorism. The council membership had included Libya, until it was suspended by the UN General Assembly on March 1 as Muammar Qaddafi moved to crush protests.

The UN Human Rights Council has been, and remains a joke.  And the extra-Congressional authority that the UN has exercised over U.S. dollars is outrageous and totally inappropriate.

 

And not only is this legislation sorely needed, it brings with it a political benefit.  The Obama administration has built its foreign policy around the United Nation, and like most liberals, believe that the UN embodies the world's best hope.  Conservatives, by contrast, believe that the UN has become an obstacle to many of our best hopes.  This sets up an interesting political dynamic ahead of the 2012 election: one that will expose the leftist obsession with funding this corrupt institution to an entire country of voters who are already in the mood to cut wasteful spending.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 30 2011

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Maybe some of you have heard...President Obama has promised a big plan to create jobs now that he returned from vacation:

"We anticipated that the recovery was slowing - the economy is still growing, but it's not growing as fast as it needs to. I've got things right now before Congress that we should move immediately, and I said so before I went on vacation, and I'll keep on saying it now that I'm back," Obama told (NBC's Brian) Williams when asked if he had a jobs plan.

 

"There are a whole host of measures we could take - no single element of which is a magic bullet - but cumulatively can start continuing to build momentum for the recovery," he said.

 

What some of you maybe haven't heard is that the preceding was President Obama a year ago, talking about how he had a jobs plan to announce when he returned from vacation in the summer of 2010.  Yes, it does sound rather familiar to what he said this year about the same topic.  Perhaps the teleprompter operator was on vacation himself, and just decided to go into reruns:

"Next week, I will be laying out a series of steps that Congress can take immediately to put more money in the pockets of working families and middle-class families, to make it easier for small businesses to hire people, to put construction crews to work rebuilding our nation's roads and railways and airports, and all the other measures that can help to grow this economy," Obama said on Monday at a Rose Garden ceremony for new Council of Economic Advisors Chairman Alan Krueger.

I guess judging by the smashing success of his super secret job creating plan revealed after his vacation of 2010, we all should be giddy with anticipation of the brilliance that is about to unfold before us next week.

 

Or perhaps we should all simply recognize that this president has no clue how to create jobs because he never has, and because he continues to believe that it is the government's job to do so.  It's not.  And when the government tries to do so, it doesn't work.  If he's confused about that reality, he could simply check his diary from a year ago.

 

The private sector is the engine of our economy.  When we go through recessions, it is logical that job growth will slow and recede.  But when we move out of recession, and the contraction of the economy is shifting into a growth mode, the government needs to accomplish one simple task: don't get in the way with a bunch of taxes, regulations and policies that create an atmosphere of uncertainty, and screw things up.  That's exactly what Obama has done, which is precisely why the president offering a secret jobs plan in late summer has become as predictable as the changing of the leaves.

 

But don't misunderstand, I'm frothing with excitement at what morsels of wisdom will come from this year's "plan."  I mean, what are the odds that this won't be something new, innovative, and different than the tired, failed platitudes of what we've heard before, right?

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Monday, August 29 2011

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I'm in the midst of researching and writing a column on the issue with "religious tests" that we give to candidates for public office.  How appropriate that I open up the New York Times' Sunday magazine and see a piece by Bill Keller entitled, "Asking Candidates Tougher Questions About Faith."

 

Keller started this way:

If a candidate for president said he believed that space aliens dwell among us, would that affect your willingness to vote for him? Personally, I might not disqualify him out of hand; one out of three Americans believe we have had Visitors and, hey, who knows? But I would certainly want to ask a few questions. Like, where does he get his information? Does he talk to the aliens? Do they have an economic plan?

Yet when it comes to the religious beliefs of our would-be presidents, we are a little squeamish about probing too aggressively...

 

Yes, you read that right.  To these elitist liberal media types, it is just as concerning if a candidate expresses a belief in God as it is if they profess their belief in space aliens walking among us.  Nice.

 

Actually, on second thought, maybe this is less an attack on believers and more a supportive nod to hard-core atheist Darwinists like Richard Dawkins who considers it a strong scientific possibility that alien sperm seeded life on earth.

 

Keller continued:

This year's Republican primary season offers us an important opportunity to confront our scruples about the privacy of faith in public life -- and to get over them. We have an unusually large number of candidates, including putative front-runners, who belong to churches that are mysterious or suspect to many Americans.

You know, I honestly have no problem with this.  I just wonder where this same inquisitive spirit was when Barack Obama sat in the church pew of a radical anti-American racist who spouted "G-- D--- America" on Sunday mornings and who is steeped in dangerous black liberation theology.  That would have been a perfect time to confront the scruples of Mr. O, but the liberal media went overboard telling us how irrelevant it was.

 

So as long as Mr. Keller will be open to subjecting the liberals to this same kind of scrutiny over their beliefs, I'm all for it.  Keller listed a few questions he thought were important to ask candidates:

To get things rolling, I sent the aforementioned candidates a little questionnaire. Here's a sample:

- Do you agree with those religious leaders who say that America is a "Christian nation" or a "Judeo-Christian nation?" and what does that mean in practice?

- Would you have any hesitation about appointing a Muslim to the federal bench? What about an atheist?

- What is your attitude toward the theory of evolution, and do you believe it should be taught in public schools?

I think those are good questions.  I have a few to add myself:

 

1. Do you believe that Jesus was fully human and fully God and that he died a physical death on a cross and resurrected on the third day?

 

 

2. When Jesus says that "no man comes to the Father except by Him," do you believe Him that faith in Him is the only way to heaven?

 

3. Do you believe that Christianity is the only true religion?

 

Keller tells us at the end of his piece:

We'll be posting the campaigns' answers -- if any -- on nytimes.com. And if they don't answer, let's keep on asking. Because these are matters too important to take on faith.

Agreed, Bill.  Let's add my questions and send them to candidates on BOTH sides of the aisle and press them for answers.  Nice to see liberals finally acknowledging the importance of faith in politics!
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 29 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

My wife continues to subject me to the "What Would You Do?" program on ABC.  In fact, she's set the DVR to record every episode so if I manage to miss one, we can watch it together later.  Lovely.

 

Truthfully, I didn't mind the show at first.  I was even moved by some of the early episodes seeing average citizens coming to the aid of their fellow citizens in distress.  But the more I watch it, the more I think this whole program is nothing but a set-up to make as many Americans as possible look bigoted, discriminatory, nasty or uncaring as possible.  It's just more of the hate-America crowd doing what they do best.

 

On February 4, 2011, host John Quinones explained how the show hired an actor to play a security guard and pretend to harass Mexicans. The piece, billed as an investigation of Arizona's immigration law, featured the faux-security guard spewing, "...If they're not legal citizens, they shouldn't be here. They should be deported. They look Mexican."

 

On March 4, 2011, Quinones and his TV crew constructed a hidden camera scenario that involved gay military veterans expressing physical affection for each other in a diner.

The journalist narrated, "They're holding hands, stroking each other's hair and caressing each other's legs...So what will happen if we throw in our actor Vince, posing as an irritated diner, who's had enough of this PDA."

On
January 6, 2009, Quinones took the program abroad to find out how actors portraying "ugly Americans" would be treated in France. Quinones chided, "The loud, clueless American, oblivious to French manners and culture, and the haughty French, who seem to relish putting them in their place."

Notice that, even in another country, the ABC program still focused on uncouth, prejudiced Americans.

Many of the people who come into contact with these scenarios ABC concocts are probably good and decent people who don't have a discriminatory or bigoted bone in their body.  They are caught in a very uncomfortable circumstance that is nothing they've ever been exposed to before (which in and of itself is a decent commentary on the state of the culture), sometimes all by themselves, sometimes with young children, and they choose not to get involved in another person's affairs.  That doesn't make them evil.  It makes them non-confrontational, shy, or cautious about what they subject their children to.

 

An increasing number of these set-ups are involving political topics that are designed to always portray the conservative position in the most negative light possible and the liberal position as the one of compassion and good judgment.  It's a sham.

 

Hopefully more and more towns will figure that out and, like Greenwich, Connecticut did, tell ABC and John Quinones to just go away.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 29 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

Many conservatives (myself included) have commented on the terrible message it sends to a country in economic turmoil to see Congress leave on vacation for 5 weeks and the President to take his Regal Opulence Road Show to the swanky Martha's Vineyard crowd.

 

 

But from a practical standpoint, I've also been quick to encourage the president to take his sweet time in coming back to the job.  Michael Tanner explains why.  The moment he gets back, we know what he's going to do...call for yet another "stimulus plan."  Yes, because that's not been tried before.

 

Please note the sarcasm of that last sentence.  In actuality, it's been tried repeatedly, and it continues to get the same result.  As Tanner observes, former President Bush tried it first:

The first of these came back in February 2008 under the Bush administration: a $152 billion measure, featuring a $600 tax rebate, several incentives for businesses, and loan guarantees for the housing industry. Then, as the recession picked up steam in September 2008, Congress passed the $61 billion Job Creation and Unemployment Relief Act of 2008. This bill pumped money into federal "infrastructure projects" and extended unemployment insurance.

But then, apparently under the impression that making the exact same mistakes of your predecessor was tantamount to the "change" he had promised the masses, Mr. Obama followed up with his own attempt:

And of course, immediately after taking office, President Obama pushed through the giant $787 billion stimulus. He followed that up with an additional $26 billion bill in August of 2010, aimed at helping states retain teachers and make Medicaid payments. On top of that, in September 2010, Congress created a $30 billion fund to provide small businesses with low-interest loans. Finally, the December compromise that extended the Bush tax cuts included another extension of unemployment benefits and a reduction in the Social Security payroll tax, both heralded at the time as stimulus measures.

Tanner also observes that other countries have tried this approach to their economic problems as well.  And they've had results about as good as us:

We're not the first country to rely on this stale brew of Keynesian economics. When Japan's asset bubble collapsed in the late 1980s, its economy went into freefall. In response, Japan pursued three major fiscal-stimulus packages, totaling 6 percent of GDP, between August 1992 and September 1993. When those failed, Japan tried still more stimulus, a total of eight different packages over eight years. The Japanese government has spent $6.3 trillion on construction-related projects alone. It also increased subsidies and social-welfare payments.

 

Japan began the 1990s with a budget surplus. A decade later it had a budget deficit equal to 7.9 percent of GDP. Today, its budget deficit is 8.3 percent, and its debt exceeds 200 percent of GDP. The result has been minimal economic growth. For all this spending, Japan's industrial production in 2008 was only 2.9 percent larger than it had been in 1991. Over the past decade, Japan's economy has grown by less than a quarter of one percent.

I suppose learning simple lessons from the mistakes of others (and ourselves) is too simple for the high-minded geniuses that now occupy the corridors of power in our federal government.  It's, once again, why electing so-called (and self-proclaimed) intellectuals isn't always the best idea.  They outsmart themselves on issues that should be pretty simple.

 

As Tanner observes, the reason we're not growing is three-fold: debt, taxes and regulation.  The answer to that doesn't require a PhD or a team of policy experts.  It requires understanding the very simple lesson of Adam Smith from years ago:

 

More than two centuries ago, Adam Smith wrote that "little else is requisite to carry a state to the highest degree of opulence from the lowest barbarism but peace, easy taxes, and a tolerable administration of justice."

So unless those three objectives are the secret growth plans he intends to unveil for us in the coming days, here's to hoping the President decides to go back and hang out on the Vineyard with his rich pals for another year and a half.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, August 28 2011

As a former sailor - hence TheOldSalt - I take weather warnings seriously. I have ridden out hurricanes and other storms at sea and on land. I know firsthand how rough they can be. I am therefore grateful for the technological advances we have to predict possible scenarios and to warn those in the wake of dangerous weather.

 

 

So it is with genuine interest that I have been following reports on Hurricane Irene's landfall. And it is with sad amusement, as well.

 

Media constantly turns legitimate warnings into hyped up exaggeration for their ratings. Even as I listen now, the voices they use to report the storm are all melodramatic. They pull up every individual human interest story they can find to evoke audience emotional response. Fatalities and property damage are always serious matters, but there has been nothing reported that could not have also happened during a severe Nor'easter that would not be receiving anywhere near this amount of media attention.

 

While I am thankful for hurricane warnings, maybe we could do with some Big Media warnings as well.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 12:30 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, August 28 2011

"The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron." - 1 Timothy 4:1-2

 

The primary theme throughout the Peter Heck website and the Liberty Tree blog site is the vital role that the Christian faith has played, and continues to play, in the life of our nation. Peter and other contributors warn of the potential and devastating effects of the removal of religion in general, and Christianity in particular, from American public life. The breakdown of moral boundaries wreak havoc throughout all sectors of our American society.

 

 

We have come a long way from where we started as a nation. While professors and administrators at most universities now reject and ridicule the Christian faith with regularity, there was a time when American institutions of higher education were firmly planted on the firm foundation of the Word of God.

 

Dr. Timothy Dwight led Yale University as president during a powerful revival during which a large percentage of the class not only professed Christ as Savior, but entered the ministry. On July 4th, 1798, Dr. Dwight declared:

Religion and liberty are the meat and the drink of the body politic. Withdraw one of them and it languishes, consumes, and dies...Without religion we may possibly retain the freedom of savages, bears, and wolves, but not the freedom of New England. If our religion were gone, our state of society would perish with it, and nothing would be left.

We are certainly seeing today all too many abandoning the faith and following deceiving spirits. And we are discovering all too well the alarming reality of the predictions made by Dr. Timothy Dwight.

 

Heavenly Father, we thank You for the foundation of truth upon which You ordained the creation of America. We thank You for its people who devoted their lives in service to You. We pray for revival so that we can return once more into Your favor and, thereby, avoid the devastation that comes when Your name is tossed aside. Soften our hearts and open our ears to hear once again the love that You desire Your people to have. Thank You for the men and women of faith who have helped shape and guide our nation as they served You. In the name of Christ our Lord we pray. Amen.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 10:41 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 27 2011

Each of the regular contributors to The Liberty Tree has expressed concern that sexual anarchists will be pushing the boundaries of adult-child sexual relations before this mess is all said and done. I have written that the homosexual agenda as it has developed provides all of the ammunition that any pro-pedophile sympathizers will need. None of us submit that every homosexual is a de-facto pedophile. What we do submit is that the rationale for the institutionalization of sexual immorality in America will inevitable be transferred to other sexual anarchy groups with increasing ease.



Recall that the push for homosexual recognition and “rights” began with the trumpet call of “tolerance.” Through multiple media outlets and cleverly crafted forms of propaganda, those opposing the open acceptance of homosexuality were demonized while those advocating for this form of sexual deviancy were idolized. Homosexuals were portrayed as fun-loving, innocent folks in comedies, dramas, etc. Entertainment and other high visibility people came “out of the closet” with near-scripted regularity. After a few years of this ongoing juggernaut, we are now at the point where “tolerance” means forced acceptance of the homosexual lifestyle.
 

Still, liberals will ridicule those of us who can see without too much effort what the future will hold as a consequence of the destruction of this social barrier. Liberals contend that they are merely moving boundaries that allow greater degrees of personal freedom. Reality demonstrates over and over that liberals are not interested in moving moral boundaries; they seek nothing less that the eradication of moral boundaries. Once again, they begin with their siren song of “tolerance.”

Tina Korbe recently posted on Hot Air that a group of psychiatrists seek to redefine pedophilia to promote tolerance. 

B4U-Act is a 501(c)(3) organization in Maryland that was established “to publicly promote services and resources for self-identified individuals (adults and adolescents) who are sexually attracted to children and seek such assistance, to educate mental health providers regarding the approaches helpful for such individuals, to develop a pool of providers in Maryland who agree to serve these individuals and abide by B4U-ACT’s Principles and Perspectives of Practice, and to educate the citizens of Maryland regarding issues faced by these individuals,” according to the group’s website.

As Tina writes, even if we allow that this sounds innocent, there are those already beginning to talk of decriminalizing pedophilia. At a symposium hosted by this organization to discuss a proposed new definition of pedophilia in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) of the American Psychiatric Association, some, not all, presenters at this organization’s symposiums expressed views that “some level of sexual activity between adults and children should be permissible.” Even without such an extreme view, the organization is seeking to normalize pedophilia at some level; they already replace the term “pedophile” with “minor-attracted persons.” 

I can already hear the liberals’ propaganda machinery gearing up to roll over those suggesting a great deal of caution in this area. “B4U-Act is trying to help these people. You just want to keep driving them underground so that we cannot help them. We can’t help them if we keep making them criminals. Besides, our prisons are overcrowded anyway. We need to reserve them for only the violent criminals. You are just imposing your morality on everyone else.” Before we know it, American taxpayers will be forced to spend millions of dollars that, in the end, lead to the legalization in some form of adult-child sexual relations.

It’s like déjà vu all over again.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 10:10 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 27 2011

Hey, Mr. President! After a grueling multi-million dollar listening tour, what are you going to do next? "Why, I'm going to Disneyland!"

 

No, President Obama did not really say that.

 

But he did travel with his family to Martha's Vineyard. Ya' know, the playground for the wealthy - like the Kennedy's. That's where all those rich Republicans hang out because - ya' know - the Republican party is the party of the rich. Democrats don't have rich folks in their political party. Ya' betcha.

 

 

Some Americans have aspired to this highest office because of feelings of duty to see this country through tough times and strive to make it better. They have set aside, or given up altogether, successes they could have secured in private life. Some have led during relatively quiet and peaceful times while others have had to face challenges never before imagined.

 

The reason that Mr. Obama aspired to this land's highest and most prestigious office, according to every indication that I observe, is so that he can use America as his playground.

 

Oh, and organize us.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 08:07 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 27 2011

I'm going back in time in order to put this week's lib-quote into its proper perspective. The year is 2010. The speaker is President Obama.

"I do believe there is hope for civility. I do believe there is hope for progress."

 

"I'm not so naive to think everybody will put politics aside... But I do hope to make progress on the very serious problems facing us right now. And that's going to require all of us, including me, to work harder at building consensus.


Now back to the present.
Maxine Waters (D-Calif.):

"I'm not afraid of anybody. This is a tough game. You can't be intimidated. You can't be frightened. And as far as I'm concerned, the tea party can go straight to hell."

Civility and consensus together with Democrats and liberals.

 

Never has worked, and never will.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 06:05 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 26 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

UPDATE: The school board in Lake County has reinstated Jerry Buell, and he will keep his job.  Read more here.

 

For those who continue to ignorantly believe that the homosexual agenda "doesn't affect me," yet another indication of the movement's assault on anyone who would dare to personally disagree with the lifestyle and sexual choices of homosexuality has surfaced in Florida:

A Florida teacher has been suspended and removed from the classroom in Mount Dora, Florida, for comments made on his Facebook page against homosexual "marriage." Liberty Counsel will be representing the teacher in court.

 

The comments by Mount Dora High School teacher Jerry Buell were posted on his Facebook page on his personal time, using his home computer. Those comments reflected the mainstream view that marriage should be between one man and one woman. According to a Liberty Counsel press release, the history and government teacher expressed his view that homosexuality is a sin and that seeing two "grooms" kissing on a news story revolted him.

 

 

Harry Mihet, the Liberty Counsel attorney representing Buell, notes that the 22-year-plus veteran of teaching is a very popular and successful teacher.
 
"In fact, he was elected as teacher of the year last year precisely because he has an outstanding reputation -- not only for being an excellent teacher, but also for loving each and every student who comes across in his classroom regardless of the student's status or lifestyle or orientation," the attorney shares.

Of course he does.  This is where we are headed, however.  An excellent teacher who is well liked is targeted as a merchant of hate.  Why?  Because he has moral objections to homosexuality.  This once again proves the falsity of saying that the homosexual "rights" agenda is passive and will not affect those who do not want to practice homosexuality.  Ask Mr. Buell about that argument.  It will because the movement's aim is not to achieve rights, but to usher in a cultural revolution.

 

As the attorney, Harry Mihet, pointed out:

"It is an outrageous insinuation that somehow being against homosexual marriage disqualifies you from being a public servant," he responds. "[That's] an idea that is so repugnant to the Constitution and to the First Amendment freedom of speech, one of our most cherished freedoms that is supposed to enable us to speak out on matters of public importance."

Indeed.  And that's the point.  The homosexual agenda threatens free speech, freedom of religion, the rights of conscience and the freedom of expression.  To continue to suggest that it doesn't is to be willfully ignorant of a host of examples that are increasing with alarming regularity in our culture.

 

It's been photographers, orphanage operators, cake makers, fertility doctors, dating site businesses, churches and now teachers who have been targeted with this message from the homosexual crowd: betray your convictions and condone our sexual behavior or be sanctioned by the state.  That isn't a movement that is interested in defending "rights," but rather assailing them.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 26 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

I was intrigued by a recent editorial that appeared in the paper of our friends at the Kokomo Perspective.  The editorial board apparently finds the choice of Republican candidates to be "comical" and questions whether the current crop is the best the Republicans can do.

 

After mocking Bachmann's gaffes and the "primary school" approach of Ron Paul, the paper lambasts Rick Perry for being...well...an idiot.  They write:

 

"This is a guy who went to veterinary school and graduated with a low C average.  His strongest subject?  Physical Education.  Not-so-strong subjects? Science, History, Math, Economics - basically everything else.  He got a D in economics and yet accuses Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke of treason?  Yeah, he's a winner."

 

I think it would be interesting to compare Governor Perry's grades to those of the "smartest president we've ever had."  Oh, wait...President Obama won't release those transcripts for us.  I guess we'll just have to take the media's word for it.

 

And that, of course, is the most humorous thing about all this.  When is the last time you heard the media talk about the brilliance of any Republican nominee for President?  Seriously.  Every Democrat is a genius (Carter was brilliant, JFK a boy wonder, Johnson a heavy hitter, Kerry a thinking man, Clinton a Rhodes Scholar, and Obama the smartest ever).  Every Republican was a buffoon (Bush was a bumbling dufus, Reagan a nappy moron, Ford a klutz, and Dole a simple minded grandpa).  So this tripe is nothing but more of the same.

 

I think it's fairly significant to remember a couple things when confronted with this kind of silliness.  First, that paragraph about Perry in particular could have been written about Reagan.  He focused more on campus athletics and dramatics than anything and was a C student.  Is there anyone in the country who wouldn't go for the results of his "buffoonish" leadership over those of our "smartest president ever?"  Precisely.

 

This notion that the highest GPA equals the best leader is phony and dangerous.  It's an elitist meme that is being advanced by the left, as they simultaneously use the media they control to convince everyone that only Democrats are smart.  All evidence to the contrary.

 

And that's the second point.  John Ransom had a good point the other day that the KP editors would do well to note:

In a quest for a few more "green" jobs that the administration can brag about, the Department of Energy recently announced that they have awarded a Spanish company, Abegnoa Bioenergy, $134 million in loan guarantees for an experimental biomass plant that will create- count ?em- only 65 "permanent" jobs in Kansas.

 

 

Say what you want but Palin's career shows she knows how to divide 65 jobs into $134 million. That skill apparently is beyond the ken of the Hallowed-Halls-of-Harvard-and-Princeton crowd. But it certainly seems like a valuable skill for a president to have.   

 

$134,000,000 /65= $2,061,538.46 per job.

 

With these kinds of economies of scale, it would make more sense for the administration to make 65 people multimillionaires outright with that money. Just think: 65 more people they could tax at a higher rate.

If that kind of central planning garbage is what we get from the "geniuses" in our political system, give me the average intelligence of a common sense guy like Perry, or the wit and street smarts of a level-headed gal like Palin any day.  That's the attitude many Americans are going to take come 2012, and it makes this "Democrats are smart, Republicans are stupid" template appear all the more desperate.

 

By the way, what were Al Gore's science grades?

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 26 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

One of the major lines of attack liberals are trying to use against the Tea Party and the limited government conservatives goes like this: "You know, we can't just wipe out government.  Government does good things and we have to have it."

 

Mitt Romney handled a silly comment like that very well the other day by basically saying, yes, government has to exist and yes, government must do certain things, and yes, that will cost money...but not more than what it takes in!  In other words, government should live within its means. 

 

And more than just that, let me add that its means should be smaller and it should be doing much less!  Conservatives don't object to the government building roads or maintaining the military.  But we do object to a government so large that it does things like this:

The Obama administration is setting new workplace regulations to assist foreign workers who fill goat herding positions in the U.S. , including employee-paid cell phones and comfy beds.
 


These new special procedures issued by the Labor Department must be followed by employers who want to hire temporary agricultural foreign workers to perform sheep herding or goat herding activities.  It describes strict rules for sleeping quarters, lighting, food storage, bathing, laundry, cooking and new rules for the counters where food is prepared.
 
"A separate sleeping unit shall be provided for each person, except in a family arrangement," says the rules signed by Jane Oates, assistant secretary for employment and training administration at the Labor Department.
 
"Such a unit shall include a comfortable bed, cot or bunk, with a clean mattress," the rules state.
 
Diane Katz, a research fellow in regulatory policy at The Heritage Foundation, unearthed the policy in the "Federal Register," the massive daily journal of proposed regulations that Washington bureaucrats publish every day.

Under the Obama Administration, the nanny state has imposed 75 new major regulations with annual costs of $38 billion.
 
"This captures what is wrong with government," Katz said.  "I could not have made this up."
 
With unemployment holding steady at 9% and government regulations adding more burden to small businesses, such as those run by ranching families, Katz said, bureaucrats aren't helping.
 
"Instead of remedying the problem, the regulations make it that much harder," Katz insisted.  "We may need a whole set of regulations just to define what a comfortable bed is.  I imagine it's not straw."

Rather than conservatives being forced to respond to silly accusations that they are closet anarchists (when they're not pursuing a rabid, freedom destroying theocracy, that is...just try to reconcile both of those diametrically opposed accusations the left hurls at the right), liberals should be forced to defend a government whose bureaucracy is so large it is issuing regulations and dictates for goat herding.

 

And while we're at it, the regulations and rules from the Fish and Wildlife Service aren't much better:

A man charged with unlawfully shooting and killing a grizzly bear had so many supporters at his arraignment Tuesday in federal court that the judge had to move the hearing to a larger courtroom...

 

Jeremy M. Hill, 33, pleaded not guilty in U.S. District Court to killing the animal with a rifle on his 20-acre property near Porthill, Idaho, at the Canadian border. He lives five miles from the closest grizzly bear recovery zone.

 

The grizzly bear is classified as a threatened species in the lower 48 states, according to the Endangered Species Act, and protected by federal law. Hill's charge is a misdemeanor.

 

Following the hearing, his father, Mike Hill, of Athol, said, "This whole thing is a waste of taxpayer money."

 

 

He said his son was concerned for the safety of his children playing outside when a mother grizzly and two cubs wandered onto his property on May 8.

 

Jeremy Hill has six kids, ranging in age from 14 years old to 10 months old. At least five were home when the grizzly was killed, Mike Hill said.

 

The bears had gone after some pigs in a pen that the kids had been raising, Mike Hill said.

 

He said his son shot one of the bears, then called authorities to notify them of the kill. The other two bears ran off.

 

He said his son could have just buried the animal and not said anything to law enforcement. He said his son is being penalized for coming forward.

Of course he is!  Because we have a government that is way too big, and some Barney Fife federal agent thinks its his job to enforce these excessive codes to the point that they prosecute a guy shooting a bear to save his kids' life.  Again, liberals should be forced to defend a government so big and bloated that its rules require more concern for endangered grizzlies than endangered children.  Ridiculous.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 26 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

By now, most are aware that there is a new front runner on the Republican side of the 2012 presidential race.  Governor Rick Perry of Texas was expected to surge towards the top of the declared candidates and be in serious competition with Mitt Romney once he announced.  He has exceeded those expectations:

PRINCETON, NJ -- Shortly after announcing his official candidacy, Texas Gov. Rick Perry has emerged as rank-and-file Republicans' current favorite for their party's 2012 presidential nomination. Twenty-nine percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents nationwide say they are most likely to support Perry, with Mitt Romney next, at 17%.

 

...

 

Perry is a strong contender among key Republican subgroups. Older Republicans and those living in the South show especially strong support for him, at or near 40%. Conservative Republicans strongly favor Perry over Romney, but liberal and moderate Republicans support the two about equally. Perry's support is also above average among religious Republicans.


 

That second paragraph is the most telling.  Perry is polling even higher than the 12 point margin among the groups most active in the Republican primary.  And while conservatives are very wary of Romney, rank-and-file Republicans are not as wary of Perry, particularly because of the strong states' rights attitude the Texas Governor has as his established reputation.  Republican establishments in the various states love the thought of having a president who would not be an obstacle, but an encourager to their creative "laboratories of democracy."  There's no question that Perry would be that guy.

 

It's a position of strength that no other candidate has...being able to unite both "sides" of the Republican electorate.  That's why I don't think the idea that Perry's high numbers will be a "flash in the pan" ala Fred Thompson in 2008.  Unlike Thompson, Perry actually wants to be in the race and is dedicated to winning it.  And unlike Thompson, Perry has a reputation and record of success.  And unlike Thompson, Perry is benefiting from "the moment."

 

This is something that I've always believed, that running for president is all about the moment.  This is what I mean: another time and another place in our nation's history, there's no way a candidate as inexperienced and as unproven as Barack Obama would have been elected to a position of such importance.  But Obama seized a unique moment in time and accomplished the unthinkable.  Now we're living it.

 

And when I see Perry saying things like this, I realize he is the perfect man for the moment where we are right now:

With all due respect to anybody that's out there either directly or indirectly criticizing me because I speak plainly, I call it like I see it. Look, I am not an establishment figure, never have been and frankly I don't want to be. I dislike Washington; I think it's a seedy place. Our country is in trouble and I don't have the privilege to sit on the sideline and watch our country be destroyed economically by a president who has been conducting an experiment on the American economy for the last two and half years.

Americans believe Washington is a seedy place.  And Rick Perry has the feel of "John Wayne Goes to Washington."  He has the feel of an old west sheriff going in to clean up the riff raff.  Combine that with his record of accomplishment in Texas, and a moment in our country that is desperate to get an overly aggressive federal government off their backs, and I think you see why Perry is in the right place at the right time.  It's why I don't think - barring some major missteps in the campaign or a surprise entry into the race by someone who bears the same kind of characteristics that he does - Perry's numbers are going to drop back down too far.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 25 2011

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Forget all the other Biden gaffes and move this straight to the front of the line.  Actually, that's not fair.  I'm tired of giving Joe Biden a pass for all the stupid things he says by declaring them silly gaffes.  This one is far worse than that.  And it deserves national attention and national scorn.

The Vice President of the United States of America was sent to China on an official trip (which in and of itself is a sad commentary on the wisdom and judgement of this Administration if they are willing to risk an international incident by letting Joe go on behalf of the country).  While there, he was commenting on what he saw as the economic unsustainability of China's one child per family policy.  But while bringing it up, our VP said this:

Your policy has been one which I fully understand -- I'm not second-guessing -- of one child per family. The result being that you're in a position where one wage earner will be taking care of four retired people. Not sustainable.
WHAT?!  Leave aside the economics and the irony of a man who supports our unsustainable Social Security and Medicare status quo making a comment like that.  Speaking on behalf of the country, Mr. Biden just condoned - or at best, refused to condemn - the most totalitarian and tyrannical communistic policy inflicted on civilians by their government in the last century.  Forced sterilization by the government.  Forced abortion by the government.  And Joe Biden won't second guess it.
 
You shouldn't have "second guessed it," Mr. Vice President.  You should have condemned it.  That you didn't has many folks (even non-conservatives, but folks who appreciate the fact that America has always stood - at least in theory - for personal autonomy, individual liberty, and basic human rights) second guessing you.  The rest of us already had you pegged as part of a team that at best doesn't get, at worst has contempt for, American values.  If nothing else, thanks for the confirmation.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 25 2011

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I remain committed to reminding anyone who will listen that despite all of the interesting political dialogue about the Republican presidential field, provided that they don't nominate a real dud, or someone with an unexpected amount of skeletons that come flopping out of their closet, the election of 2012 is going to be all about Obama and what he's done with his first term.

 

And even more specifically, the election is going to be all about what Obama has done with the economy.  It is oddly telling then, that the president who ran as Mr. Anti-War is doing all he can to make his administration of foreign wars the centerpiece of his re-election thrust.  Well, that and his peachy fine intentions that Team Obama is hoping Americans will judge him for, rather than his results.

 

 

Why do I say that?  Am I being unfairly critical of Obama's performance?  No, I'm merely being a realist.  I'm looking at not only the current state of the American economy, but the predictions of the future state of the American economy in 2012 coming in from all quarters of experts right now.  It appears to be a Perfect Storm of Malaise that will be tugging on the rudder and weighing down the hull of the SS Obama:

In order to win re-election, Barack Obama really needs an economic renaissance.  As James Pethokoukis reports for Reuters, it's looking increasingly clear that he's not going to get it.  The big analysts are now banking on almost zero growth and even higher unemployment than we have now for next year's presidential election:

 

The White House's worst-case scenario for the economy on Election Day next year has become Wall Street's baseline scenario. After looking at a string of weak economic reports and Europe's growing fear of debt meltdown and contagion, JPMorgan - led by Obama pal Jamie Dimon - has just come out with a politically poisonous forecast.

 

The megabank now thinks the economy won't grow much faster over the next 12 months than it did during the first half of this year ? and that's assuming Europe doesn't go all pear shaped. It sees GDP growth at just 1.5 percent this year, 1.3 percent next year with unemployment at . 9.5 percent heading into the final days of the election season. "The risks of recession are clearly elevated," the bank said. Here's its reasoning:

 

Consumer sentiment has tumbled and household wealth has deteriorated. Survey measures of capital spending intentions have moved lower and the housing market shows little sign of lifting. Small businesses, retailers, builders and manufacturers all report a weaker business environment. Global growth has disappointed and foreign growth forecasts have been taken lower. In response we are lowering our projection for growth, particularly in the quarters around the turn of the year.

 

Team Obama had better permanently shelve any plans of running a "Morning in America" campaign. In fact, if a) the economic forecasts of Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs are accurate, and b) voters behave as they usually do during bad economic times, then c) Barack Obama will be a one-term president. No president in the modern era has been reelected with the unemployment rate higher than 7.4 percent, much less two percentage points higher.

So enjoy the talk about Perry's swagger, Mitt's flip-flops, Bachmann's fanaticism, Paul's quirkiness, and maybe Palin's celebrity.  Any of those logically possible Obama opponents will be secondary in the voting booth.  The question facing economically depressed Americans will be this: want another four years of this "hope," or is it time for a change?

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 25 2011

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The incomparable Mark Steyn has another absolutely fabulous column out right now - this one demolishing the imperial presidency that Barack Obama seems to be relishing out there on Martha's Vineyard right now.  My favorite paragraph:

Symbols are important. In other circumstances, the Obamas' vacation on Martha's Vineyard might not be terribly relevant. But this is a president who blames his dead-parrot economy on "bad luck" ? specifically, the Arab Spring and the Japanese tsunami: As Harry S. Truman would have said, the buck stops at that big hole in the ground that's just opened up over in Japan. Let us take these whiny excuses at face value and accept for the sake of argument that Obama's Recovery Summer would now be going gangbusters had not the Libyan rebels seized Benghazi and sent the economy into a tailspin. Did no one in the smartest administration in history think this might be the time for the president to share in some of the "bad luck" and forgo an ostentatious vacation in the exclusive playground of the rich? When you're the presiding genius of the Brokest Nation in History, enjoying the lifestyle of the super-rich while allegedly in "public service" sends a strikingly Latin American message. Underlining the point, the president then decided to pass among his suffering people by touring small town Minnesota in an armored Canadian bus accompanied by a 40-car motorcade. In some of these one-stoplight burgs, the president's escort had more vehicles than the municipality he was graciously blessing with his presence.

Read the whole column.  But the reason I first noticed it was that Steyn had properly identified what I have thought (and many others believe) has been the most significant line of any Republican candidate in the primary to this point.  It may end up being the underlying principle of the candidacy that derails King O.

Rick Perry, governor of Texas, has only been in the presidential race for 20 minutes, but he's already delivered one of the best lines in the campaign:

 

"I'll work every day to try to make Washington, D.C., as inconsequential in your life as I can."

While liberals poo-poo this line and this belief, prattling on about how much we need the federal government to do this, and how the federal government is irreplaceable since it does that, the reality is that you don't have to look too far to find examples of why an inconsequential federal government sounds really nice:

Schylar Capo, eleven years old, of Virginia, who made the mistake of rescuing a woodpecker from the jaws of a cat and nursing him back to health for a couple of days, and for her pains, was visited by a federal Fish & Wildlife gauleiter (with accompanying state troopers) who charged her with illegal transportation of a protected species and issued her a $535 fine. If the federal child-abuser has that much time on his hands, he should have charged the cat, who was illegally transporting the protected species from his gullet to his intestine.

 

So eleven-year-old Schylar and other middle-schoolers targeted by the micro-regulatory superstate might well appreciate Governor Perry's pledge. But you never know, it might just catch on with the broader population, too.

I'm guessing it will.  And I'm guessing the big government libs know it will too.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 25 2011

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It's a common refrain I get everytime I bring up the silliness of Darwinian macro-evolution on my radio program: "Peter, stop talking about science...you lose credibility and look silly."  Really?  Cause I kinda think that the folks who believe they share the same great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandpappy with a fern are rather silly.

 

This ridiculous notion of science vs. faith works only on those who fail to acknowledge or wish to hide their own faith.  The example I've often given is this: suppose we find a big wooden boatlike structure buried in the ice up on the mountains of Ararat.  What would science have proved?  Nothing more than the fact that there is a wooden structure on the mountain.  Creationists would obviously tie that scientific find into their narrative of history and claim it was Noah's Ark.  It might be, but that relies on faith in the Biblical narrative.  Science just proves that there's a wooden structure.

 

In the same way, atheists would find another explanation for it that would fit with their narrative that begins with a disbelief in the existence of God.  Their explanation might not be as credible, or it might be more credible, but both sides are relying on faith.

 

It's the same principle with Darwinism.  Yes, the majority of mainstream scientists accept it, and yes our courts have declared it the state religion.  But it is unquestionably built upon the back of some very large assumptions.  In other words, it's ultimately based on faith.  Honest evolutionists like Jastrow and Urey acknowledge that to be the case, by the way.

 

I often get asked what some of the biggest hurdles for Darwinists to overcome truly are.  Well, honestly, there are many.  But here's a couple from a recent article on the "impossibility of evolution:"

Where'd You Get Your Information, Bub?

 

Everything that makes up your body requires genetic information. You've got hands and feet because your genes code for it. The same is true for any creature?dogs, camels, you name it.

 

The genetic information in humans varies from the information in animals, plants, and so on. Seems obvious, so why point it out? Because for animal kind A to somehow "presto-change-o" into animal kind B, the information's got to change. A fish doesn't just morph into an amphibian without something changing in the genes. It would have to gain some new information.

 

Here's the clincher: when we use operational science?the kind involving observable, repeatable, testable results?we have never observed, repeated, or been able to test animal kind A turning into animal kind B?at all. Sure, there's some genetic "do-si-do" going on through mutations and gene drift, but there's no way fish are going to sprout hair and opposable thumbs. Just in case you think by "no way" we mean there's still a chance, there's not?none, zilch, nada, not going to happen. What if we add billions of years and cool artistic renderings? Still no.

 

Original Recipe

 

That first point is devastating enough. But here's how evolution gets buried even more.

 

You've probably heard news accounts about how life could have started on earth "gazillions" of years ago in volcanoes, slush pools, crystals, rocks, you name it. Maybe you've heard something about "artificial" life or test-tube life or rotten-food-in-the-refrigerator life (okay, maybe not the last one).

 

Those are interesting speculations, but they overlook one important rule in biology: life doesn't, cannot, and will never come from non-life. Life comes from life. Always. That's the law?the Law of Biogenesis, to be exact.

 

All these failed experiments, like the Miller-Urey experiment, really show is just how much intelligence is required for life to begin in the first place. (That is, way smarter than us.)

That's why I don't get too worked up when people question my credibility for believing in special creation.  When someone willingly suspends rationality and the laws of science to ignore this kind of evidence that weighs heavily against their faith in the non-existence of a Creator, I'm not going to be too intimidated by their attempts to hijack the name of science in order to prove their untenable faith.  But hey, that's just me.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 24 2011

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I'm beyond amused by the left's reaction to the unfolding drama in Libya.  They are pulling muscles all over their body as they seek to pat themselves and President Obama on the back for supporting the ouster of Gaddafi.  We've talked about the humorous irony of liberal support of this military action.  After all, the justification for Libya is far weaker than it was for Iraq, and you would have to have been out of our solar system these last few years to not know how unjustified the left feels our action in Iraq was.

 

 

What can't be denied is that the world is better off without this lunatic in power.  But it will be interesting if the left will hold Obama accountable for what comes of Libya the way they wanted to hold Bush accountable for post-war Iraq.  Perhaps Colin Powell could remind Mr. Obama of his famous admonition to Bush: if you break it, you own it.

 

If that's the case, early signs of what could emerge in Libya are not encouraging for Obama's nation-building exercise:

The dust has not yet settled over the Libyan capital of Tripoli since rebels took control over the weekend. But already, a draft constitutional charter for the transitional state has appeared online (embedded below). It is just a draft, mind you, and gauging its authenticity at this point is difficult. There is also no way to know whether this draft or something similar will emerge as the final governing document for a new Libyan regime.

 

...

 

But despite the Lockean tenor of much of the constitution, the inescapable clause lies right in Part 1, Article 1: "Islam is the Religion of the State, and the principal source of legislation is Islamic Jurisprudence (Sharia)." Under this constitution, in other words, Islam is law. That makes other phrases such as "there shall be no crime or penalty except by virtue of the law" and "Judges shall be independent, subject to no other authority but law and conscience" a bit more ominous.

As we watch Christian persecution intensify in places like Afghanistan and Iraq, it provides a legitimate platform for criticism of people like Bush who believed our intervention would bring about a more tolerant, freedom-respecting civilization.  The left is quick to agree with that point.

 

It will be a test of their consistency and honesty to see if those same liberals will hold Mr. Obama to the same standard in Libya.  Anyone have a guess as to whether they'll pass that test?

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 24 2011

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As Obamanomics is literally crumbling before our eyes, and we are witnessing once again how incredibly devestating socialism is for everyone (including most of all the poor - who suffer the worst under the failed policies of central planning), left wingers are pulling out all the stops in trying to prop up their failed coup.  And by pulling out all the stops, that means the one that they pretend to hold that "religion has nothing to do with politics."

 

Not that they don't play the Jesus card whenever they believe it can benefit them (as in, "do you really think that Jesus would not let illegal immigrants into the country," or "who would Jesus hate").  But the latest round of "Jesus was a socialist, so don't talk bad about it" nonsense deserves a healthy smackdown.  Recently, liberal Gregory Paul made that silly accusation at the Washington Post.

 

Thankfully, Jordan Sekulow and David French were ready to do the smacking:

Socialism is a relatively modern construct, a governmental system invented roughly 1,800 years after Christ's death, not a biblical mandate. The question, then, is whether socialism is compatible with Christianity, not whether the Bible mandates socialism.

 

How can Mr. Paul claim Jesus was "pro-socialist?" Jesus, after all, despite many demands from His followers, pointedly refused to establish an earthly government. Undeterred, Mr. Paul interprets Jesus's "substantial encouragement for the poor" and warnings against the moral pitfalls of wealth as support for socialism. Yet one has to travel quite the intellectual and theological distance to equate admonitions towards charity and warnings against greed with divine sanction for the destruction of private property rights and the forcible redistribution of wealth.

Indeed.  And that's why people like Mr. Paul quickly retreat from such a position when pressed with the Biblical evidence and try to use the New Testament teachings on the early Jerusalem church to back up their position.  As Sekulow and French point out, that doesn't fly either:

He [Paul] claims the Jerusalem church's famous voluntary sharing of goods and property wasn't voluntary at all but instead represents a "form of terror-enforced-communism imposed by a God who thinks that Christians who fail to join the collective are worthy of death." This theological assertion -- a reading of Scripture that has completely escaped theologians for two millennia -- rests on the story of Ananias and Saphhira, who were struck dead after they "lied to the Holy Spirit." They had sold land, given part to the Apostles but claimed that they had given all. Here are the Apostle Peter's words to Ananias:

 

Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? 4 Didn't it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn't the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied just to human beings but to God.

 

Catch that? The very passage which Mr. Paul believes clinches his argument that the Bible endorses "terror-enforced-communism" actually reaffirms private property rights. The land belonged to Ananias, and after he sold it, the money was "at [his] disposal." (Indeed, Jesus Himself declared that "the worker deserves his wages.") His crime wasn't withholding money; his crime was lying.

What's funny to watch is the way liberals will quickly do an about-face when informed Christians respond by speaking truth to the lies and distortions of the left when it comes to Scripture.  Much like you hear them weakly assert that "the Bible is not a science book" when it comes to questions over Darwinism, these same folks who attempt to use the Bible to support their socialist designs will quickly start asserting, "well, the Bible isn't an economics book."  Fair enough.  But just like I say with science, that doesn't mean when the Bible speaks of economics, the Bible is wrong or misleading on that topic.  French and Sekulow go further:

While the Bible is hardly an economics text, some economic and social themes do endure, and they are incompatible not just with socialism but also many aspects of the modern welfare state.

 

While the Bible calls us to help the poor, it is also clear that the poor must help themselves to the extent they are able. In 2 Thessalonians 3, Paul warns against idleness and says, "The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat." In 1 Timothy 5, Paul also declares, "Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever." Even inclusion on the widows' "list" (which entitled widows to receive aid from the church) was conditioned upon age and good conduct.

 

The requirement that the poor be industrious is also found in the one earthly government that God did explicitly create: Old Testament Israel. In the midst of comprehensive laws that govern everything from religious ritual to sexual conduct to diet comes this instruction: "When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Do not go over your vineyard a second time or pick up the grapes that have fallen. Leave them for the poor and the foreigner." Not only is private property recognized ("your land") but the welfare that does exist requires the poor to actually engage in the harvest to collect the gleanings.

But the most compelling piece of evidence?  These two authors point this out as well: the Bible teaches to take care of, and "strengthen the hand" of the poor, rather than increasing poverty.  History teaches without question (and we are proving it again right now with Obamanomics): socialism creates and increases poverty.  No Christian, then, should or would support it.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 24 2011

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Since Rick Perry's announcement to run for President, no other candidate has received the type of response or attention on the campaign trail as him.  This is true in terms of conservatives excited about his candidacy, liberals panicked about it, and libertarians annoyed by it.

 

At the radio show, we've taken in a lot of various responses on all sides of that spectrum.  One of the most coherent and easy-to-follow objections to Perry's candidacy came from a friend of the show, Dr. Blacklidge, who blogs at "The Publisher's Report."  Dr. B probably falls into the great center of the American political landscape, sharing many conservative viewpoints on fiscal issues, but certainly drifting left on social issues.

 

 

And his leftward tilt on those social issues is what caused him to express extreme concern over the candidacy of Rick Perry.  Here was his post, entitled "Scary Rick Perry:"

For some reason, I find Texas Governor Rick Perry a bit creepy. I have known nothing about him until he showed up as a possible Republican candidate for President of the United States. He was referred to in one column that I read as a "George W. Bush on steroids". This is really scary.

 

That is not what got me though. There was something about the way he dressed that caught my eye first. His suit appeared to be one of the very expensive types..... you know, shiny cloth and tightly tailored.

 

Then I began to hear things that I did not like. He wears his religion on his sleeve. He questions evolution (which likely means science, too) and is proud of the fact that Texas teaches Creationism in schools as science. He has concluded global warming is a scam. He does not believe in a woman's right to make decisions about her own body. He is intolerant of gay and lesbian folks. He takes credit for the job gains in Texas when other outside factors are largely responsible. He wants to eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency. And on and on. In other words, he wants to create a society I don't want to be a part of supporting.

 

Just for the record, I have voted Republican for the office of President all but once since first voting decades ago. I am one of the people the Republican Party has to be really careful about now. I thought George W. Bush was a disaster for this country and largely responsible for the ease at which Barack Obama and the Democrats won over John McCain. Of course, McCain didn't help with his choice of a cipher for Vice President as he attempted a pandering for the female vote.

 

Now the Republicans have a chance to regain the Presidency and bring some financial sanity and stability to this country. I hope they do this without bringing along a social agenda like that professed by Gov. Rick Perry. If they do, they will lose and we will see a second term for President Barack Obama.

In other words, Dr. Blacklidge believes Republicans should nominate someone fiscally conservative, but socially liberal...or at least indifferent.  You know, like John McCain (pre-Palin), or Bob Dole.  Because an across-the-board conservative candidate, especially one who is unabashadly a social conservative...you know, like Ronald Reagan...just can't win.  This was the advice Colin Powell is famous for giving Republicans in 2008.  After they followed his advice, he endorsed the Democrat Obama.

 

To me, this is another indication of Perry's strength as a conservative candidate in this election cycle.  Here's why:

wears his religion on his sleeve...

I'm thankful for someone who is unabashed about being a Christian and for someone who I know sees the importance in taking his kids to church

questions evolution (which likely means science, too) and is proud of the fact that Texas teaches Creationism in schools as science...

Since science is about questioning theories and testing them against the evidence, I'm thankful for someone who doesn't see the schools as the place to force a rigid dogma of ideas ultimately based on some HUGE assumptions (evolution) as undeniable fact.  You know, someone who opposes "state sponsored religion" (in this case the religion of non-theism)

global warming is a scam...

I like a president who acknowledges the obvious rather than continues wasting money and threatening our economic livelihood just to pad Al Gore's retirement plan and fuel the hopes and dreams of the neo-Marxists among us who drive the global warming movement.

does not believe in a woman's right to make decisions about her own body...

Hmmm, unlike liberals who want to deny a woman the right to make all kinds of decisions about her body (how much salt to eat, what doctor she can go to, what drugs she can purchase, etc.) the only decision I see Gov. Perry wanting to prevent women from making is the decision to kill another human being.  But then again, I'm creeped out by those who think murder is a constitutional right or "personal decision."  Yikes!

He is intolerant of gay and lesbian folks...

If by intolerant, of course, you mean he has moral objections to homosexuality.  By that token, all Bible believers are intolerant...and that would make you guilty of being intolerant of those you deem intolerant!

He takes credit for the job gains in Texas when other outside factors are largely responsible...


Ah the Obama administration line.  Check out this link and see if you still feel that way:
http://www.politicalmathblog.com/?p=1590

He wants to eliminate the Environmental Protection Agency...

The unconstitutional actions being taken by this agency to undermine the American economy makes me one to jump for joy at the thought of its elimination.

In other words, he wants to create a society I don't want to be a part of supporting...

That shouldn't be too much of a surprise to Kent.  Perry is a conservative and he's not. 

 

Whether Rick Perry will be the best choice for conservatives remains to be seen.  But there is no question that this year's candidate must be one who unites all three elements of the conservative base (defense, economic, social).  Initially, Perry seems to have a good chance at doing that...but there's a long way to go.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Wednesday, August 24 2011

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Herman Cain is fantastic.  I became a Cainiac when I watched his presidential announcement speech.  A plain-talking, common sense American with a passion for his country and a business sense that tells him the role of government is not to act like a business, but get out of the way and let business act like business.

 

But beyond the issues, there is a personal likeability about Cain that stands out most of all.  And his sense of humor is undeniable.  Take his response to the vile alleged comedian Janeane Garofalo who recently made the racially insensitive suggestion that Cain was not a serious candidate, but merely someone being paid by the Republicans to run so that the Party didn't look racist.

 

 

First of all, it's important to remember the source.  This Garofalo is the same genius who suggested that the free market, balanced budget movement known as the Tea Party was all about "hating a black man.  It's racism, straight-up."  Obviously, the woman is a few bricks short of a load and her insecurities and inabilities to discuss policy differences intellectually cause her to resort to fanning the flames of racial division.  It's sad, it's pathetic, but it's where so many on the left are as they hurl these accusations at their conservative counterparts.

 

Cain recognized this, and rather than respond with indignation (which would have been totally justified) at the smear against him and his beliefs (which don't lose sight of that reality: Garofalo was making an incredibly offensive proposition that a black person cannot seriously have conservative viewpoints.and that those who do aren't authentically black), he responded with a gentle, disarming, and self deprecating humor that makes his admirers even more impressed with him.  Talking with Sean Hannity about the situation, Cain said,

"Look, if Janeane Garofalo and these other loonies believe I'm being paid, would she send me the phone number because whoever is supposed to be paying me - they are behind on their payments, OK?" Cain said. "As far as Olbermann talking about delusions of grandeur - see Sean, you know this, I know this and most correct-thinking conservatives know this: When all else fails the liberals call you names or attack your personality. I find it pathetic and hilarious that she is now resorting to this because what that means, Sean, is they are really concerned that I'm a threat to their beloved Barack Obama."

I'd like to think that in a similar position, I could be as gracious, as witty and wise as Cain was here.  It's a rare gift indeed.  And Cain didn't leave it at that.  He actually went further and expressed how this double standard of racial insensitivity from the racial sensitivity police on the left can be interpreted as a good thing for the conservative movement:

"It exists because the liberals, including the president, the Democrats, they like a double standard," Cain said. The president was the one who called for a new era of civility. And now look at what they are doing. You are right. It is a double standard because the Democrats nor the president have any positive results to run on. The American people want results. And all they can do is name-call. Their only weapon is to try and demean the Tea Party movement, call them names. Didn't Joe Biden also say we were a bunch of terrorists? Look, they are so out of touch with the American people and it is starting to show. That's all it is, Sean."

Amen, Herman.  Keep that Cain train a'rollin.  I'm happy to be aboard.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 23 2011

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There is a lot of noise and chatter out there about the presidential intentions of Sarah Palin.  I guess I should clarify that there has been a lot of noise and chatter about it since the end of the 08 campaign, but it has intensified and become much more specific in the last few days.

 

Take the words of a major Palin organizer in Iowa:

Political organizer Peter Singleton tells National Review Online that Sarah Palin will likely launch a presidential campaign by the end of September. "I believe that she will run," he says. "I can't see her sitting this election out."

 

Palin, a former Alaska governor, is scheduled to address a tea-party rally on September 3 in south-central Iowa. Singleton is one of the forces behind the event, working with grassroots groups. "Labor Day will kick off the Republican campaign for the nomination," he hints. "She is going to make a major, major speech."

 

The truth is that Palin is immensely popular in Iowa.  It would make since that should she decide to enter the race, she would announce in Iowa.

 

And consider this radio commercial from Tea Party America that is advertising Palin's upcoming speech in Iowa on September 3rd.  It certainly sounds like it is leading to something big.  Obviously this can be excused as nothing but Palin's classic manipulation of the media to her advantage.  For a supposed idiot, she plays the media like a harp.

 

Some will say that most all presidential candidates tip their hand about holding a presidential announcement so as to generate media buzz and bring folks in to the event.  And that, perhaps, is the most logical reason to assume that Sarah Palin will do it another way.  After all, any Sarah Palin speech is going to generate a lot of buzz and attention simply because it's Sarah Palin.

 

She is in a unique position in that no other candidate has her charisma.  She can completely control the timing and the methodology of her announcement that doesn't play by the old political rules.

 

So here's the truth: no one knows what Sarah Palin is going to do.  No one knows if she'll run, and know one knows if she does, when and how she'll announce.  The one thing you can count on with Palin is that just when you think you're one step ahead of her, you find out you're ten behind.  But that's not the most significant point.

 

The most important thing to note is two-fold: First, if she joins, she will be an immediate player, likely pulling major supporters in Iowa and elsewhere from a wide swath of current candidates (many of whom have been telling Republican loyalists that she won't run), from Bachmann to Cain to Perry to Romney. 

 

Secondly, as much as the left puts on a brave face and says that they "hope" she gets the nomination because Obama will beat her like a drum, they are petrified by this woman.  The thought that she will shatter the glass ceiling and become the first woman president, the thought that she will dethrone their chosen one has them panicked beyond belief.  And if the hysteria and excitement she can generate just by having a few political watchers suggest that she is going to run is any indication, they have good reason to be.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Tuesday, August 23 2011

Hear the audio version - including the theme song - here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

Today on the radio program we made our 400th call to the offices of Congressman "Silent Joe" Donnelly requesting an interview.  For 400 straight shows, we have called and left messages with the Congressman's press secretary, Elizabeth Chappell, and we are yet to receive the courtesy of a return call.

 

Maybe it's because I'm pestering them?  Maybe because they think it is a gimmick or a joke?  Let me be clear: there is nothing funny about a Congressman who ignores his constituents.  A great number of them listen to my radio program and want to hear him answer questions that I would ask that the others won't.  Keep in mind also that Congressman Donnelly is now running for the United States Senate, meaning he should be speaking to every single member of my listening audience who is a Hoosier.

 

Let me remind you of the history of my relationship with Congressman Donnelly to drive this point home.

 

 

After he won election a few years ago, I went by myself to a "Meet the New Congressman" event at a local union hall.  I was warmly greeted by then Howard County Democrat Party Chairman, Bob Stephenson.  He was hospitable and polite and made sure I got a chance to actually meet and speak to Congressman Donnelly.  When I did, I shook his hand, told him who I was, and also told him that though I had supported his opponent in the election, I was hopeful he would prove to be a man of his word and remain the pro-life, pro-family conservative that he campaigned as during the election.

 

He thanked me for coming, and then said, "I will remain strong, and I want you to hold me accountable."  My mistake, apparently, was believing he was serious.  Perhaps I can be excused for buying it, given that Congressman Donnelly's office called us and set up a rotating, monthly interview with me on my radio program.  That didn't last long.  His office called back after the first time and informed me that he was over-committed to such interviews and wouldn't be able to make it every month.  I asked if he would be willing to come on every so often when something significant was going on, and was assured he would be thrilled to do that.  Congressman Joe even gave us a great quote about how it was a pleasure to be on my show that we used in our promotional material for a while.

 

But then I invited the Congressman on my show when it became clear he was feeling pressure from his party bosses on a very anti-Christian piece of legislation called the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.  I put him on the spot and asked tough questions.  He demurred, saying he hadn't decided how he would vote...but that when he did, he would come back on the show and explain his vote.  He voted with his Party and against his Christian constituents.  We haven't been able to get him on the show since...and that was around four years ago.

 

I didn't begin my daily calls to his office until after the ObamaCare situation became a matter of national debate.  Knowing he would be getting an earful of Pelosi, and knowing how wobbly his legs had become when trying to decide between his constituents and his party leadership, I wanted to feel him out on the air.  After three straight days of leaving messages, I hadn't even gotten a response from his office.  I began emailing and/or calling every day.  When that had gone on for a number of weeks, I couldn't believe that his office would be so rude as to not even respond to our requests.  I also knew that his constituents who were bombarded with the "average Joe" persona he attempted to convey would find it hard to believe that they were not even returning my phone calls.  So I decided to air the calls.  We did that for hundreds of shows.  I didn't do it as a stunt.  I didn't do it for attention.  I did it to demonstrate just how quickly the Washington culture of no accountability had affected a man who touted his desire to represent all his constituents, and promised that no matter your political beliefs, you would always get a straight answer from him.

 

At this point, I'd settle for any answer from him...straight or crooked.

 

Yes, we've attempted to make light of the situation as best we can.  We've nicknamed him "Silent Joe" not because we thought it was clever, but because there's no name more appropriate.  Yes, we've put together a theme song that jabs at his deafening silence.  In that song, we include clips of the Congressman's one appearance on my show where he promises to come back and explain his votes.  And we're still waiting. 

 

In my messages I have begged, prostrated, serenaded, been forceful and conciliatory.  I have promised to give the Congressman a list of the questions I will ask weeks in advance and not deviate from them one bit.  It hasn't mattered.  In a large portion of the 400 messages I've left, I have stressed that if the Congressman has no interest in coming on the show (something that is fairly apparent), I will accept that.but that they owe me and all his constituents the courtesy of a returned phone call to decline.

 

This is what Washington, D.C. does to good people.  It's a shame.  It only took a few short years for Silent Joe to become the very Congressman he campaigned against.  And he demonstrates just how true that is every day he doesn't pick up the phone...which, incidentally, has happened for 400 straight show days now.  Pathetic.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 23 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

A few weeks ago, I wrote a column that called for the rational people in the country - be they atheists or Christians - to stand up and stop the insanity coming from the organization American Atheists as they sought to remove the 9/11 Cross from permanent enshrinement at the Ground Zero memorial. 

 

In that column, I wrote this of the group American Atheists:

These are the folks who ignorantly theorize that it is their constitutional right not only to be a non-believer, but to never have to interact with, encounter or be subjected to the beliefs of anyone else.  Therefore, they belligerently proselytize their unbelief, assailing Nativity Scenes, the Ten Commandments, candy canes, Christmas carols, public prayers, and now steel beams that form the shape of a cross.


Perhaps I shortsighted their position by not fully explaining all the suffering they have endured by virtue of this cross being there at Ground Zero.  After all, the official
lawsuit notes that they,

"have suffered, are suffering, and will continue to suffer damages, both physical and emotional, from the existence of the challenged cross."

Want more specifics on their suffering?  They explain that the mere cite of the 9/11 cross has caused them to suffer:

"dyspepsia [upset stomach], symptoms of depression, headaches, anxiety, and mental pain and anguish."

That's the basis of their case.  If that doesn't offend the sensibilities of every rational American, we are indeed in trouble as a civilization.  Because let's follow this through to its logical end, shall we?  If these stated reasons can be justification for the removal of the 9/11 cross, what else will then be legitimate targets of the queasy-stomached folks at AA?  Jordan Sekulow tells us:

I've identified things that must be removed or altered immediately to rectify the government's continued disregard for the hurt feelings of godless Americans.

 

-The new Martin Luther King Jr. National Memorial includes much of "Dr. King's Spiritual Presence" by permanently inscribing portions of his sermons on the memorial inscription wall

 

-The Ground Zero Cross at the 9/11 Memorial and Museum.

 

-The National Motto: "In God We Trust"

 

-"Under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance

 

-The National Day of Prayer

 

-"Seven in Heaven Way" street sign honoring seven firefighters who made the ultimate sacrifice on 9/11

 

-Original copies of the Declaration of Independence in the National Archives, which reference "our Creator" and "Nature's God"

 

-The Chaplains Corps of each branch of the U.S. Military

 

-All "Religious" Artwork in the National Gallery of Art

 

-The Latin phrase "Laus Deo [Praise be to God]" on the cap of the Washington Monument

 

-Surviving copies of The National Anthem, which includes the phrase "In God is our trust"

 

-On the Lincoln Memorial are etched the word of the Gettysburg Address ("this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom") and his Second Inaugural Address ("with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right,") which are replete with references to God

 

-The Jefferson Memorial's dome includes this inscription about God, "I have sworn upon the altar of god eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." There are other references to God in the memorial

 

-On the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery is inscribed, "Here rests in honored glory an American soldier known but to God"

 

-The federal courthouse containing the Court of Appeals and the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia contains a sculpture, which includes a cross and the Ten Commandments

 

-The south frieze of the U.S. Supreme Court Courtroom depicts Moses holding the Ten Commandments

 

-The metal gates on the north and south sides of the U.S. Supreme Court Courtroom contain the Ten Commandments, as well as the doors leading to the courtroom

 

-The east facade of the outside of the Supreme Court shows Moses holding the Ten Commandments

 

 

-The Library of Congress Jefferson Building contains a large statue of Moses holding the Ten Commandments and the Apostle Paul over looking the rotunda

 

 

-Inscribed on the wall of the Cox Corridors of the U.S. Capitol is the phrase "America! God shed his grace on Thee"

 

-The chamber of the U.S. House of Representatives features Moses.

 

-The Prayer Room of the U.S. Capitol contains the phrase "Annuit coeptis" (translated "God has favored our undertakings") and the words of Psalm 16:1

 

-The House Chamber of the U.S. Capitol contains the National Motto "In God we trust"

 

-Inscribed in the Senate Chamber of the U.S. Capitol are the phrase "Annuit coeptis" (translated "God has favored our undertakings") and the National Motto "In God we trust"

 

-The Emancipation Proclamation featured in the National Archives invoking "gracious favor of Almighty God"

 

-The United States Department of Veterans Affairs chaplains program

 

-"Christmas" and "Thanksgiving" are official federal government holidays

 

-The U.S. Constitution itself references "Year of our Lord"

 

-Church of the Holy Trinity v. United States, 143 U.S. 457 (1892), where the Supreme Court declared that "this is a Christian nation"

 

-Zorach v. Clauson, 343 U.S. 306 (1952), where the Supreme Court declared, "We are a religious people whose institutions presuppose a Supreme Being"

 

-The Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial with thousands of white crosses over each of the graves represented at that cemetery

 

-Arlington National Cemetery is replete with religious symbolism complete with a list of authorized religious emblems

That anyone would attack these vestiges of our nation's heritage on the basis of their "upset stomach" at being exposed to them is a clear indication of who the radicals are that are woefully out of touch with what this country is all about.  Again, I will stress...it's time to say enough.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 23 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

One of my favorite moments in Ben Stein's movie "Expelled" is when he interviews/debates Richard Dawkins on the origin of life.  After getting Dawkins to acknowledge his obvious belief that it is beyond ridiculous and clearly unscientific to believe that a supernatural Supreme Being created or design the world in its present form, Stein leads Dawkins down a path of questioning that results in something hilarious.  The dignified Dawkins, taking himself oh-so-seriously, eventually states his belief that he considers it a possibility that alien life forms actually seeded life on earth millions of years ago.

 

God?  Not possible.  Alien sperm?  Possible...and very scientific.

 

I was reminded of that hilariously revealing moment when I read this piece in the Guardian:

It may not rank as the most compelling reason to curb greenhouse gases, but reducing our emissions might just save humanity from a pre-emptive alien attack, scientists claim.


If you've ever wondered why I don't feel intimidated when people challenge my beliefs on Creation or the fact that I don't buy into the global warming alarmism by citing all the "scientists" that believe opposite of me...this is why.  There are a lot of loony scientists out there.  I'm interested in evidence, not people who wear the label of science but who prefer groupthink and agenda advancement.

Watching from afar, extraterrestrial beings might view changes in Earth's atmosphere as symptomatic of a civilisation growing out of control - and take drastic action to keep us from becoming a more serious threat, the researchers explain.

 

This highly speculative scenario is one of several described by a Nasa-affiliated scientist and colleagues at Pennsylvania State University that, while considered unlikely, they say could play out were humans and alien life to make contact at some point in the future.

So am I to understand that recent polls showing a growing number of Americans are skeptical of the global warming alarmists' manipulated data, disproven theories and doctored computer models has provoked the Warmers into abandoning their old strategy of scarring people with Hollywood blockbusters that show New York City overwhelmed by global warming induced tidal waves?  Are we now going to see more of the Mars Attacks" type of cinematic motivation coming from these geniuses?

Shawn Domagal-Goldman of Nasa's Planetary Science Division and his colleagues compiled a list of plausible outcomes that could unfold in the aftermath of a close encounter, to help humanity "prepare for actual contact".

 

In their report, Would Contact with Extraterrestrials Benefit or Harm Humanity? A Scenario Analysis, the researchers divide alien contacts into three broad categories: beneficial, neutral or harmful.

Uh, is this what they're doing over at NASA now that the Space Shuttle movement has been grounded permanently?  My goodness, something as proud as NASA has been turned into this nonsense.  There is simply nothing that the hand of liberalism can't ruin or spoil.  If you don't believe me, get a load of this and consider how many of your tax dollars went to pay the professors that sat around dreaming all this up:

Beneficial encounters ranged from the mere detection of extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI), for example through the interception of alien broadcasts, to contact with cooperative organisms that help us advance our knowledge and solve global problems such as hunger, poverty and disease.

 

Another beneficial outcome the authors entertain sees humanity triumph over a more powerful alien aggressor, or even being saved by a second group of ETs. "In these scenarios, humanity benefits not only from the major moral victory of having defeated a daunting rival, but also from the opportunity to reverse-engineer ETI technology," the authors write.

 

Other kinds of close encounter may be less rewarding and leave much of human society feeling indifferent towards alien life. The extraterrestrials may be too different from us to communicate with usefully. They might invite humanity to join the "Galactic Club" only for the entry requirements to be too bureaucratic and tedious for humans to bother with. They could even become a nuisance, like the stranded, prawn-like creatures that are kept in a refugee camp in the 2009 South African movie, District 9, the report explains.

 

The most unappealing outcomes would arise if extraterrestrials caused harm to humanity, even if by accident. While aliens may arrive to eat, enslave or attack us, the report adds that people might also suffer from being physically crushed or by contracting diseases carried by the visitors. In especially unfortunate incidents, humanity could be wiped out when a more advanced civilisation accidentally unleashes an unfriendly artificial intelligence, or performs a catastrophic physics experiment that renders a portion of the galaxy uninhabitable.

 

To bolster humanity's chances of survival, the researchers call for caution in sending signals into space, and in particular warn against broadcasting information about our biological make-up, which could be used to manufacture weapons that target humans. Instead, any contact with ETs should be limited to mathematical discourse "until we have a better idea of the type of ETI we are dealing with."

I'm sorry.  I have nothing that I can possibly add to this story.  It speaks for itself.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 22 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

We must be entering an election cycle.  The pandering is beginning to hit full steam (I know, I know...did it ever stop?):

Bowing to pressure from immigrant rights activists, the Obama administration said Thursday that it will halt deportation proceedings on a case-by-case basis against illegal immigrants who meet certain criteria, such as attending school, having family in the military or having primary responsible for other family members' care.

 

The move marks a major step for President Obama, who for months has said he does not have broad categorical authority to halt deportations and said he must follow the laws as Congress has written them.

Imagine that...Mr. Obama has been voting "present" on the issue for months as his team evaluates which side of the issue would be most politically advantageous to him.  Now that they've made a determiniation, it appears he has decided that whole "following the laws of Congress" thing isn't all that it was once cracked up to be.

 

 

Leave the issue of illegal immigration to the side for just a second and realize how weak this really is.  It depicts a guy who is willing to hide behind a façade he doesn't really believe in the first place (that he must act in obedience to Congress), but one that he hopes will benefit him politically.  He then breaks from that façade not because anything has changed methodologically, but simply because he finds it more beneficial politically to leave his hiding place.  Amazing that anyone would continue defending this guy's shameless lack of leadership.

 

Okay, now back to the actual issue:

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said she does have discretion to focus on "priorities" and that her department and the Justice Department will review all ongoing cases to see who meets the new criteria.

 

"This case-by-case approach will enhance public safety," she said. "Immigration judges will be able to more swiftly adjudicate high-priority cases, such as those involving convicted felons."

What's humorously pathetic is that the focus on deporting convicted felon illegals should already be a foregone conclusion, and of the highest priority.  That this wasn't already the policy is an astounding statement in an of itself.

 

What this policy shift really means?  It means that deportations of illegal immigrants is going to slow tremendously over the next year of Obama's first term.  Oh, for your "safety" of course.  The fact that such a move matches up with his bid for re-election in a cycle that it is clear he must overpeform with certain demographics like Hispanics to even have a chance.that's a mere coincidence.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 22 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

Did you hear about the labor union organizer who was being harrassed by the local tea party and then was shot when he surprised a tea partier vandalizing his car?  Oddly enough, even though that event never occurred you might have mistakenly thought you did hear something about that because of the way the mainstream media has spun out-of-control with that liberal template that tea party conservatives are fomenting hatred.

 

But what happens when, as in the case of the union thug who beat up a tea partier a few years ago, the shoe is on the other foot?  Does the media show the same kind of willingness to run true, real stories of violence when the target is a victim of left-wingers?  Behold the way the Toledo Blade reported a recent shooting in their fine town:

Man attempting to stop auto vandalism is shot

A man who interrupted a suspect trying to puncture the tires of his vehicle with a knife was shot in the arm.


... When confronted, the assailant shot a small caliber pistol at the victim, grazing his left upper arm. The unidentified victim was treated at the scene and was to seek medical treatment on his own, said the Monroe County Sheriff's department.


Authorities described the suspect as being in his mid-20s to early 30s, white, medium build, and about 6 feet tall. He wore a dark-colored T-shirt, jeans, and a dark-colored baseball hat.

Hmmm.  No name of the victim, and nothing here to make you think this was anything but a random act of violence.  Now, a local radio station, WSPD, decided to do a little bit more looking into the case, and guess what they found out?

Monroe County Sheriff Looking into Apparent Union Related Violence
Lambertville non union electrical contractor shot, SCAB scrawled on truck


The Monroe County Sheriff's Department is working to solve a case of vandalism that turned life-threatening.


John King was shot in the arm last week when he surprised a man trying to slash the tires on the truck at his Lambertville home.
The word "scab" was also scrawled on the side.


King says he became suspicious when he saw an outside security light outside go on.


When he stepped out of his front door, the man fired one shot and ran off.


King is the owner of the largest non-union electrical contracting company in the area.


Huh.  Funny how the major paper could miss the seemingly significant detail that the word SCAB had been scrawled into the truck of the victim, who just so happened to own the largest non-union company in town.  Do you suppose the Blade would have been so generic in their reporting if a tea partier had scrawled ?socialist' into the car, and then shot a Democrat party official?  Methinks not.

 

CNSNews carried a little bit more information about our victim that would seemingly be newsworthy:

Unfortunately, being a non-union electrical company, King has always been on the radar of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). In fact, in 2006, he won a significant case against the IBEW at the US Court of Appeals, after the union had improperly promised his electricians jobs on union sites if they voted the union into King's company.


... Unfortunately, the vandalism has never stopped. This year alone, he's had to report three incidents of damage to police.
This doesn't include the incidents of stalking he and his men have to go through while they're working.


... Last Wednesday ... As soon as he got outside his front door, King yelled at the individual who was crouched down by King's vehicle.
As soon as King yelled, the suspect stood and, without hesitation, fired a shot at Mr. King.


Luckily for King, as he yelled, he also stumbled. If it weren't for that, however, John King's injuries might have been much, much worse. In fact, he might have been killed.

Of course, that info is only newsworthy if you're interested in reporting the news.  Leftist media is not interested in that, however.  They are interested in carrying forth a template that helps Democrats and the left, while hurting conservatives and the right.  If that means covering up a shooting or two, while smearing tea partiers with accusations of things there is no proof of whatsoever, so be it.

 

Journalistic integrity is a relic in the mainstream leftist press. (h/t Tom Blumer, Newsbusters)

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 22 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

I have talked before on the show how sick I am of hearing the mainstream media work in the "pedophilia scandal" every time there is a news story about Catholics.  I'm not Catholic, but it really ticks me off.  While pedophilia is an epidemic problem within Islam to a large degree and certainly within the homosexuality movement, neither of those groups are targeted - in fact, they are protected - from such scrutiny.

 

 

But beyond the blatant attempt to disparage Catholicism at every turn, what really irks me is how little the media's coverage of the topic actually has to do with protecting children.  They aren't that worked up about pedophilia...they're just worked up about Catholics.  The media is out for blood far more than protecting kids, which is why it doesn't matter whether the accusations prove to be true or overblown.

 

If there's an accusation, they will cover the story.  Well, I guess I should clarify.  They will cover the story as long as the accusation is leveled at a Christian.  They've proven how disinterested they are in pedophilia stories that don't involve the Catholic Church with the way they've treated a bombshell accusation from former Hollywood child-star Corey Feldman:

"I can tell you that the No. 1 problem in Hollywood was and is and always will be pedophilia. That's the biggest problem for children in this industry ... It's the big secret."

 

It was not Feldman's only stomach-turning assertion. He also claimed that the "casting couch," the sick Hollywood legend by which roles are given in exchange for sex, even applies to children.

 

In addition to saying that he himself had been molested as a boy by "vultures" in show business, Feldman went on to claim that the demise of the late actor Corey Haim was precipitated by "a Hollywood mogul" abusing him as a boy. Feldman added:

 

"There was a circle of older men who surrounded themselves with this group of kids. And they all had either their own power or connections to great power in the entertainment industry .

 

"[T]here's a lot of good people in this industry, but there's also a lot of really, really sick, corrupt people. And there are people in this industry who have gotten away with it for so long that they feel they're above the law, and that's got to change. That's got to stop."

 

So here is a claim of massive abuse and cover-ups happening in Hollywood. Where is the major media on this?

 

Nearly a week after the episode aired, the response to Feldman's alarming claims has been almost non-existent in the major media. While the Boston Globe and the New York Times have hyperventilated over decades-old allegations of abuse by Catholic priests (many of which were all-too-true), neither paper dedicated even a drop of ink to Feldman's shocker.

 

Now, it's possible Corey Feldman is wrong and is simply trying to get attention with a shock claim like this.  If so, it appears he picked the wrong target.  Is there anyone who wonders whether the media would have run with this story had Feldman leveled such an accusation not against Hollywood producers, but against, say, a Priest or Bishop? 

 

Remember this the next time you hear the media drudge up a 10 year old story of Catholic priest molestation.  Christianity teaches and Catholics recognize pedophilia to be a sin.  Hollywood teaches it to be anything but...which is why a responsible media would focus far more scrutiny on the latter than the former.  That is, if they were truly concerned about the well being of children.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Sunday, August 21 2011

"No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. ?Make level paths for your feet,' so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed." - Hebrews 12:11-13

 

A consistent question that arises in human conversation, even among Christians, is that of suffering. Some use suffering as their excuse to reject God. Their line of thinking goes like this: "I cannot believe in a God who allows or brings so much suffering in this world." For others, suffering is endured as much as possible without any particular thought of God one way or another.

 

 

Then there are those for whom suffering becomes the catalyst of eternal life. It will always remain a mystery to me, I think, how this comes about. That is, in part, the process of faith. There are several names that come to mind whose lives became unalterably changed with a new or renewed faith in God through suffering; for instance, Fanny Crosby, Horatio Spafford, and Joni Eareckson Tada.

 

Another name to add to this list, although not as well known, is Scott Smiley. At the age of 24 years, this West Point graduate and Airborne Ranger Army Captain became the victim of a vehicle-based improvised explosive device in Iraq. Even though the tactical situation was tense, Capt. Smiley and his men attempted to protect innocent Iraqis as they approached a suspicious vehicle. As Capt. Smiley testifies, "It's really a difficult position because we want to protect the Iraqi people and we don't want to cause harm. Making sure the Iraqi people are safe is of huge importance to us."

 

Unfortunately, in this instance, the delay in determining the true threat allowed the vehicle's driver to detonate the explosive. Blast shrapnel wounded Capt. Smiley, resulting in permanent blindness. In the days that followed, Scott felt and expressed a great deal of anger at himself, at others, and especially at God. His anger unnerved his loving wife, Tiffany, who went back to her room near the Walter Reed Army Medical Center and earnestly pleaded with God to overcome her husband's anger and denial. Scott later testified, "I think at that time, my family knew what I needed. It wasn't necessarily eyesight. It was God."

 

Over time, slowly but surely, Scott Smiley accepted God's discipline, his injury, and his new way of life. As of this writing, he remains on active duty as a company commander of a warrior transition unit. He has also shared his story and testimony as author of Hope Unseen.

 

Almighty God, we admit that there are times when Your will and Your ways confuse us. When it comes to human suffering, we are usually left with questions we cannot answer. Nevertheless, the life testimony from countless numbers of Your willing servants teach us that even suffering, no matter what it is or how it comes, is a fitting tool in Your hand that leads us to a closer walk with You and a more dynamic witness to others. Indeed, may our prayer be that You will strengthen our feeble arms and weak knees in order to be ever better servants in Your Kingdom. In the name of Christ our Lord we pray. Amen.
Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 01:45 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 20 2011

It would be nice if more people would take note that when liberals get around to deciding that they want to influence people, they put on a conservative mantle. The Los Angeles Times recently published a column decrying the efforts states have enacted to handle the immigration problem. The Times argues that state laws that identify and detain illegal immigrants deflects resources away from the real work of federal immigration authorities: "That's hard to do when states pass laws that redirect federal resources. The Department of Homeland Security must be free to focus enforcement efforts on those illegal immigrants who pose a real danger to communities, not those who are merely in this country to work." Now for the reversion to meaningful conservative logic:

State and local authorities have every right to be frustrated with the lack of leadership from Washington on this issue. But the answer is federal immigration reform, not more bad law from the states. As the Obama administration properly moves to block those laws, it also needs to supply an alternative.


Putting aside the many logic flaws contained in the Times article concerning immigration laws enacted by the states, I observe that their conclusion is exactly what conservatives are calling upon the federal government to do: stop passing more bad laws to fix problems that your bad laws created in the first place!

 

Case in point: foreclosures and housing market collapse. Created by bad laws that forced once reasonable lenders into writing loans for unqualified applicants. Resulted in: (1) "creative" loans designed to postpone full payments for a few years; (2) "creative" derivative accounting in order to carry said loans on the books; (3) packaging of these derivatives along with good loans in order to sell between lenders; (4) snowballing number of foreclosures as balloon payments came due for owners who failed to prepare for it or could never be prepared for it; (5) driving down home values resulting in more loan call requirements; (6) creating a credit freeze and recession-creating economic slowdown; (7) resulting in more of the above.

 

Politicians' response? Bailout select failing financial and corporate institutions and continue to require the underwriting of bad loans, this time with more regulations and resultant fees.

 

The answer is not more bad laws! The L.A. Times has the right solution; they just apply it to the wrong problem.

 

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 02:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 20 2011

Watching "The Revolution" produced by the History Channel has led me recently to reflect upon an interesting phenomenon. Our modern presidents are frequently likened to some of our most notable and greatest presidents. usually the wishful thinking of adoring partisan supporters.

 

Throughout the 2008 campaign and election, and on into the early days of his presidency, Mr. Obama was compared to FDR, JFK, and Abraham Lincoln.

 

As it relates the beginning stages of this new nation, which is nothing short of miraculous by several measurements, it has dawned on me that, as far as I know, no other president is bestowed the attributes of George Washington. No other president is compared to him.

 

 

George Washington is in a complete class by himself. How was it that this man and the foundation of a new nation intersected? As the program noted more than once, citizens of America and other nations alike expressed amazement that Washington refused every opportunity to seize the nation as his personal domain and empire. He refused every opportunity to ascend to a throne as the first King of America, or to assume control as a military head of state. While he did not refuse to accept the mantle of public service many times over, no matter how reluctantly, he refused to accept any role as tyrant.

 

If for no other reason than this, George Washington is and will forever be America's greatest President to whom there will never be any comparison. There is none other like him.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 01:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 20 2011

Followers of the Liberty Tree (thank you for your participation) will recognize the name Mike Larson. As one of the Weiss Analysis team members, I have referenced his columns before. During the week of August 14, his columns have been so grave that I admit that he "frightened" me.

 

As I have written in the past, I have historically been quite upbeat about the American economy and its ability to overcome all kinds of problems. Those familiar with the late Louis Rukeyser will understand me when I say that I always loved his upbeat responses to the "gloom and doom" analysts he occasionally had on his Wall Street Week program. In market parlance, I am a perennial bull.

 

 

Until two to three years ago. I have experienced decades of market downturns with the dogged determination to ride them through, but this one got to me. I still refuse to be a perennial bear, but I have decided to take off some blinders. Consequently, my personal inquiries and studies led me to the Weiss services, among others.

 

I frequently listen to my local talk radio whenever I'm on the road, and the programming includes Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh. Prior to the 2008-2009 economic meltdown, Beck took a very ominous turn as he talked about preparing for severe economic austerity and gold and other survival measures. Listening to his show left me feeling anxious. Rush was much more fun to listen to.

 

I since learned that I would have been better off paying attention to Beck's alarms and suggestions. We all would have been better off.

 

I also discovered that I would have been better off had I known about the Weiss services back then (no connection I am aware between Weiss and Beck). So... even though their "Crisis Week" and Mike's subsequent columns "frighten" like Beck's warnings did a couple of years ago, and even though I still dislike alarmism, I am experienced enough to pay attention. Why? Because my human senses tell me that his cause and effect descriptions are not merely predictive; they are happening.

 

Therefore, I share with you Mike's articles written during "Crisis Week." Do with them what you like.

Because of the pressing nature of this great global debt calamity, we have declared this week "Crisis Week" here at Money and Markets. I've asked Mike Larson to report on how we got here, what's next and what you should be doing to protect yourself and profit. Be sure to read Mike's report in its entirety. ? Martin

Government Spends Everything It Has

 

Government Debt Exploding

 

We've Sold Our Birthright for a Mess of Porridge

 

Europe Crashing! U.S. Is Next!

 

Washington Declares WAR on the Dollar

 

[Installment #6 is a brief recap of the prior five, so I have not cited it.]

 

Stay informed. Stay aware. Don't dismiss such warnings, but don't be overwhelmed by them either. Sensible preparation can go a long way.

 

In fact, preparation can be preventive. A big part of life onboard submarines was damage control training. We were incessantly putting out non-existent fires and stopping imaginary flooding during training drills, all with the purpose of being properly prepared should the real disaster strike. One positive side effect was that our frequent training exercises caused us to be alert to identify and correct potential hazards before they ballooned into full-blown, life-threatening casualties. So it is now. Get enough people to prepare for potential catastrophe, and there may be enough recognition of what can bring about such danger that it is defused before it can take off. Oh well, one can hope.

 

Stay prepared; stay safe.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 11:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 20 2011

TheOldSalt gives a tip of the hat to this week's lib-quote winner, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, for his description of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP; aka, food stamps) as "the most direct stimulus you can get into the economy during these tough times."

Obviously it's putting people to work. Every dollar of SNAP benefits generates $1.84 in the economy . . . If people are able to buy a little bit more in the grocery store and then someone's got to stock it, shelve it, package it, process it, ship it, all of those are jobs.

And there we have it, friends...the silver bullet solution to all our economic woes. The answer has been hiding in plain sight for all these years, and now Mr. Vilsack has pulled the cover back. Forget all that "shovel-ready" job nonsense; simply put all Americans on food stamps! Yeah, that's the ticket! A buck-eighty-four into the economy for every food stamp dollar? Who can pass up that rate of return?

 

Reminds me of Rep. Pelosi's (D-Calif) astute economic analysis that unemployment benefits are an "economy stimulator" and "job creator."

 

This is the moronic mush-minded thinking that constantly gushes from those living in the land of left-believe. And these are the folks who get to dictate their foolishness in the form of totalitarian-style policies on all Americans when they are given the reins of power.

 

Liberals absolutely hate it when conservative economists and successful entrepreneurs hint at any type of "pull-yourself-up-by-the-bootstrap-and-hard-work" approach to overcoming poverty. They consider it nothing but fantasy because there are too many roadblocks to success and, besides, since not everyone can be successful, then it is not "fair."

 

But after going into apoplectic seizures when personal innovation and labor are mentioned, they turn around and tell Americans government spending solves economic malaise. What they utterly fail to address is the good ol' honest truth that every dollar doled out to anyone is taken out of the economy they claim to fix. I don't have a figure, but I suspect that every dollar removed from the economy by these masters of our fate ends up being more than a dollar effectively removed. Yet, liberals would have us believe that they have discovered the "perpetual money-making machine." Pretty soon, they'll be forcing us to buy their "perpetual motion machines" and water bottled from "the fountain of youth."

 

Sadly, liberals stimulate poverty, not the economy.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 06:32 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 19 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

Sure, it couldn't be more juvenile or childish.  But from a different perspective, it couldn't be more hypocritical.  I'm referring to the emerging trend of leftists to try to bully conservatives and Christians into silence on the issue of homosexuality by "smearing" them with the accusation that they are just closeted homosexuals themselves.

 

It's really amazing to watch: the same folks who profess how there is nothing wrong or shameful about the practice of homosexuality, attempting to shame Christians by saying they practice homosexuality.  And, incapable of defeating conservatives on the battlefield of ideas and morality, this attack line is becoming increasingly common.

 

 

Matthew Philbin noted the most recent example:

Take, for example, Marcus Bachmann, husband of GOP presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann (Minn.). The Bachmanns have been married more than 30 years, and have five children. Mr. Bachmann runs a clinic that offers Christian counseling to people struggling with "unwanted" homosexual feelings - derisively termed "praying away the gay" by liberals.

 

So Bachmann must be ... gay? While it might not be a surprising assertion in some far left quarters, like Mother Jones or TalkingPointsMemo, the rumor has gained currency in more "mainstream" outlets. According to Slate's William Saletan, the notion "started as a subtle joke among bloggers. Then it progressed to parody and overt insinuation." When "The Daily Show's" Jon Stewart picked up on it, saying that Bachmann offered ex-gay therapy "so he can hoard all the gayness for himself," cracks about Bachmann's sexuality became commonplace on the left.

 

Anti-bullying bully Dan Savage actually deemed Bachmann gay just by listening to his voice. Others commented on his walk and manorisms. The rumor made an appearance on the gossip site Gawker, which wrote, "Lots of people have been making the assumption that because he's a little bit that way, Bachmann?like so many other anti-gay weirdos?is in fact a sadly closeted gay man himself."

 

At The Daily Beast, Michelle Cottle wrote of "the growing whispers about Michele Bachmann's campaign?the uncorroborated speculation that the candidate's profoundly antigay hubby, Marcus, is a closeted gay man." Mediaite wondered whether his "good sense of style" betrayed his true leanings. From the Huffington Post to the Los Angeles Times and the Minneapolis Star Tribune, liberal journalists and gossip columnists have been gleefully repeating the charge.

Unreal.  Again, it astounds me that this is a tactic used by those who champion the idea that homosexuality is completely normal and completely moral.  Yet, to try to disparage their political opposition, they call them gay?!  Oh, and let's not forget, calling someone or something "gay" in a derogatory fashion is now completely unacceptable under the left's rules of political correctness.  Yet, that's exactly what they do with Bachmann and virtually anyone else who is perceived to oppose the lifestyle of homosexuality.

 

And worse yet, they level the accusation based on effeminate traits or speech patterns?!  Talk about stereotyping!

 

I engaged in a mini-debate of sorts with a gentleman on this very topic recently.  It didn't go well for him - not because I was that smart or crafty in our exchanges, but simply because his argument imploded on himself and I won just by letting him talk.  His thesis was that since there were a few prominent individuals (Ted Haggard and Larry Craig) that had taken anti-homosexuality positions publicly, but then later were caught in homosexual activities, that was enough to justify these accusations.

 

Two guys.  Others, if they rack their brains hard enough can probably come up with a few more.  Let's say they come up with 5.  Five people who oppose homosexuality were actually engaging in homosexuality.  Compare that to the millions who oppose homosexuality but who aren't.  Yet the left persists with this line of illogic as though they're onto something profound.

 

No, what they're onto is yet another derisive, bullying tactic to smear and insult your opposition like children because you're incapable of defeating their ideas.  Pathetic.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 19 2011

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Good Morning America's George Stephanopoulos joined the rest of the mainstream leftist media in their opening week assault on the candidacy of Rick Perry.  It really has been amazing to watch this unfold the last few days.  The volume of attacks on Perry signals an extreme concern felt by the Obamabots that the man who could unseat The One may have just arrived on the scene.

What else can explain the vociferous and ferocious nature of their ceaseless string of attacks on Perry, his qualifications, his record, and now...his resemblance to George W. Bush?


The GMA host handed a microphone to the Obama White House and amplified their anti-Perry message loud and clear to his audience:

Interviewing Jake Tapper, Stephanopoulos explained, "I was talking to a White House official." He added that "their strategy will be to lash whoever gets the Republican nomination" to the Republican Congress and "former President Bush."

A few seconds later, Stephanopoulos asserted, "Already in the popular culture, the idea taking hold that he is a carbon copy of George W. Bush."

ABC then flashed a New York Daily News photo generation of Perry looking into a mirror and seeing the former President staring back at him.


The somewhat humorous thing about this, of course, is that folks who follow Texas politics will be the first to tell you that there is a wide chasm separating the former president and the would-be president.  In fact, many of Bush's former staff actively campaigned for Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson when she challenged Perry's recent run for re-election. 

But that doesn't matter to the media.  Painting John McCain as President Bush's third term worked in 2008, so they figure they might as well go back to the well.  But, as will become quite obvious as the campaign unfolds, Rick Perry and George Bush are worlds apart in their approach to government, federalism, and spending.  Daniel Horowitz proved as much with a side by side comparison of the two men's presidential campaign announcements.

First, President Bush in 1999:

"I'm running because my party must match a conservative mind with a compassionate heart. [...]

It is conservative to insist on education standards, basics and local control. It is compassionate to make sure that not one single child gets left behind.

I know this approach has been criticized. But why? Is compassion beneath us? Is mercy below us? Should our party be led by someone who boasts of a hard heart? I know Republicans - across the country ? are generous of heart. I am confident the American people view compassion as a noble calling. The calling of a nation where the strong are just and the weak are valued.

I am proud to be a compassionate conservative. I welcome the label. And on this ground I'll take my stand."

Horowitz observes:

The inconspicuous implication of Bush's newfound dictum was that pure, unadulterated conservatism, while perspicacious in theory, lacked inherent compassion in its application.  He felt that it must be tempered with big government handouts and control over the educational system.  Consequently, upon assumption of the presidency, President Bush ushered in a new era of big government conservatism; an oxymoron, if there ever was one.  He governed with a muddled concoction of conservatism (pro-life and tax cuts) mixed with "compassion" aka statism (the largest expansion of government at the time).  And as the saying goes, the rest is history.

By contrast, here is Rick Perry in his announcement:

"You see, as Americans we're not defined by class, and we will never be told our place. What makes our nation exceptional is that anyone, from any background, can climb the highest of heights. As Americans, we don't see the role of government as guaranteeing outcomes, but allowing free men and women to flourish based on their own vision, their hard work and their personal responsibility. And as Americans, we realize there is no taxpayer money that wasn't first earned by the sweat and toil of one of our citizens.

That's why we reject this President's unbridled fixation on taking more money out of the wallets and pocketbooks of American families and employers and giving it to a central government. "Spreading the wealth" punishes success while setting America on course to greater dependency on government. Washington's insatiable desire to spend our children's inheritance on failed "stimulus" plans and other misguided economic theories have given us record debt and left us with far too many unemployed. [...]


We stand up and proudly proclaim that Washington is not our caretaker and we reject the state that, in Margaret Thatcher's words, she said a state that takes too much from us in order to do too much for us. We will not stand for that any longer. [...]

In America, the people are not subjects of government. The government is subject to the people. And it is up to us, to this present generation of Americans, to take a stand for freedom, to send a message to Washington that we're taking our future back from the grips of central planners who would control our healthcare, who would spend our treasure, who downgrade our future and micro-manage our lives. [...]

And I'll promise you this: I'll work every day to make Washington, D.C. as inconsequential in your life as I can. And at the same time, we'll be freeing our families and small businesses and states from the burdensome and costly federal government so those groups can create, innovate and succeed."

Bush promised to make Washington, D.C. an agent of compassion in your life.  Perry promises to make Washington, D.C. as inconsequential in your life as he can.  Worlds apart, Mr. Stephanopoulos...worlds apart.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 19 2011

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If I asked you what name you most associate with Barack Obama, what would it be?

Some on the political right would say Karl Marx, Saul Alinsky or Jeremiah Wright.


Some on the political left would say Gandhi, FDR, or John F. Kennedy.

According to Obama himself, he apparently thinks Martin Luther King, Jr.  Or judging by his 2008 campaign, perhaps Jesus.

Columnist Elise Jordan has a fascinatingly different yet appropriate name we should be associating with Mr. O...Angelina Jolie.  Before you scoff, check out her thesis:

"Too big to fail" is the catchphrase of the financial recession. The opposite is true of Obama. The media, the Democratic establishment, and his other supporters had done so much to artificially inflate Brand Obama that he never had a chance to live up to the hype, despite the best efforts of his supporters to keep his image polished. Obama's brand was too big to succeed ? the product was never going to taste as good as the slick advertisements had led everyone to believe.

When Obama hit the national scene, he was young, dynamic, and fresh. He moved through the paces during his short Senate career, visiting war zones with congressional delegations and asking seemingly intelligent questions at various hearings, but never sponsoring any notable legislation. (He did manage to net a million-dollar book deal before he entered the Senate, adding a second memoir to his canon.) During the 2008 primaries, he was praised for his speeches and proceeded to trounce veteran Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail. Voters chose Obama's mystery over Hillary's baggage. More important, perhaps, than his evolution from community organizer to president was his journey from man to brand, from unknown to celebrity.

Tough to argue with that analysis.  Does it make the American electorate look silly and gullible?  Sure.  But judging by the state of our economy after just two and a half years of the Obama "hope and change," that is the least of our concerns.  So what makes him like Angelina, specifically, you ask?  Why not another celebrity?


Obama, I started thinking, was to American politics what Angelina Jolie was to the international-aid community ? a feel-good picture, attractive, and somewhat inscrutable. At the beginning of Angelina's humanitarian adventures, news outlets ran adulatory articles claiming she didn't use a publicist, signaling that she was "real" and "committed." She was a beautiful, exciting movie star, who drew a lot of public attention for her causes. A good thing, right?

Angelina's views mattered so much that she met with high-level officials at the State Department after a trip to Baghdad, and she has been accepted for membership of the Council on Foreign Relations. What had she done to burnish her foreign-policy credentials besides go on VIP tours of hotspots? What valuable insight had she offered the world? Well, it didn't really matter ? she looked fantastic in a headscarf, and the mainstream media were more than happy to play along with the wild child-turned-international do-gooder narrative.

John McCain was ridiculed when he tried to get the celebrity tag to stick by comparing Obama with Paris Hilton. It didn't work, perhaps because it was the wrong celebrity. Obama is not a reality-TV star ? he's classic old Hollywood.

There is one pretty important distinction, however, between being a celebrity in Hollywood vs. a celebrity in politics.  Ms. Jordan points it out:

Angelina has it a bit easier than the president. The praise she received in the corridors of power aided her brand reinvention, but the only products expected of her were a few more good movies. It was enough just to be a star. For Obama, the sky-high expectations that catapulted him into office included actual results. He hasn't delivered them, which is the problem. Brand Obama has taken a serious hit. It no longer makes people feel very good. All that's left is the celebrity shell.

She's right.  Angelina used her celebrity to sell relief to the Third World.  Barack used his to sell change to the American people.  That change hasn't occurred as people envisioned, and they are likely to hold the celebrity salesman accountable.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 19 2011

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As Obama was telling car manufacturers in Minnesota recently that they needed to not make so many trucks and SUVs, choosing instead to follow his magical misery bus towards the promised land of "renewable energy" utopia, word broke about one of the left's precious renewable energy businesses:

Evergreen Solar Inc., the Massachusetts clean-energy company that received millions in state subsidies from the Patrick administration for an ill-fated Bay State factory, has filed for bankruptcy, listing $485.6 million in debt.

Evergreen, which closed its taxpayer-supported Devens factory in March and cut 800 jobs, has been trying to rework its debt for months. The cash-strapped company announced today has sought a reorganization in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware and reached a deal with certain note holders to restructure its debt and auction off assets.


The Massachusetts Republican Party called the Patrick administration's $58 million financial aid package, which supported Evergreen's $450 million factory, a "waste" of money.

"The bankruptcy of Evergreen Solar is another sad event for the Massachusetts company and highlights the folly of the Patrick-Murray Administration which has put government subsidies into their pet projects instead of offering broad based relief to all Bay State employers," said Jennifer Nassour, head of the state GOP.

Greg Bialecki, Patrick's economic development czar, defended the administration's support for the once-promising Evergreen. The state is still trying to recoup about $4 million in cash from the Marlboro-based company.

Conservatives have been saying for a long time that it is not that we oppose renewable energy.  We like it!  The issue is that it is extremely expensive and even more inefficient.  If it made economic sense to try to power businesses from windmills and cities from solar panels, the market would have led us in that direction a long time ago.  But it hasn't because it doesn't.

The president is trying to tinker with economic realities, over-regulating carbon emissions and other fossil fuel related issues, trying to force our transition to his renewable energy by making non-renewables even more expensive. 

But the market will not sustain the unsustainable.  Once the government subsidies dry up or run out (as in this case where Obama porkulus dollars disappeared), these pie-in-the-sky "green" wonderlands don't survive. 

When that happens, what do you suppose will happen to our economy if we have driven fossil fuels entirely from the market with over-regulation?  This is what is meant by the term Obamaggedon.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 18 2011
As you probably know, a scandal has rocked the State House after the Indianapolis Star received emails from a male prostitute, or perhaps just a male homosexual looking for anonymous sex or brief companionship. The man had advertised in Craigs List under men seeking men. The young man, Kameryn Gibson, 18, received a request from State Representative Phil Hinkle, 64, to meet him in a hotel for $80 for “a couple hours of your time” and a tip of $50 or $60 “for a really good time.”

When the young man met with Rep. Hinkle at the hotel, something happened to frighten the kid. It may have been that Hinkle told him he was “a lawmaker” which might have spooked the boy with the impression that he was set up for a police sting. Gibson tried to leave, and Hinkle allegedly panicked, grabbing him, offering him more money, an Ipad and blackberry cell phone if he would stay and remain quiet. Hinkle is married and has a family.



There is something deeply disturbing about a man of that age pursuing a boy (or girl) young enough to be his son (or daughter) or grandson (or granddaughter). We live in a sex-saturated society that seems intent on sexualizing young people. Those cultural messages are obviously impacting even the highest, most respected leaders among us.

Rep. Hinkle needs to resign. I am not sure why it took several leaders 24 hours, rather than 24 minutes after this story broke to call for Hinkle’s resignation. Why he has not done so yet, unless these charges are totally false, is unknown. . . but after all, it is not really his fault. It is yours!

This is the implication from the head of the Indiana Stonewall Democrats, a homosexual activist group. Here is what she said, "This is almost a textbook example of what happens when someone is not allowed, by either community attitudes or by personal conflicts, to be open about their sexual orientation or gender identity.” In other words, it is the fault of a society, which still adheres somewhat to traditional values. Even more bizarre, if only Hinkle had been open about his pathologies, his grotesque sin would seemingly be just fine.

It should be no surprise that hard-core homosexual activists (as opposed to individuals) first blame conservative values rather than the alleged act described here. The attraction between men and boys is probably not as surprising to them as it is to us. Researchers Karla Jay and Allen Young reporting for The Gay Report found that 73% of homosexuals surveyed had at some time had sex with boys aged sixteen to nineteen years of age.”

This aspect of homosexuality has long been present and promoted in the gay subculture particularly in magazines, novels, and books. Helmut Graupner writing in The Journal of Homosexuality claims, “Man/boy and woman/girl relations without a doubt are same-sex relations and they do constitute an aspect of gay and lesbian life.” (One homosexual author, Daniel Tsang, went so far as to write, “Boy lovers are not the child molesters. The child abusers are parents who force their staid morality onto the young people in their custody.”)

In 2002, Paula Martinac wrote an article entitled Mixed Messages on Pedophilia Need to Be Clarified, for the Washington Blade, a major homosexual magazine, in which she criticized the ease at which her community accepted and even glamorized such behaviors between adults and young teens. “When some gay men venerate adult-youth sex as affirming while simultaneously declaring ‘We’re not pedophiles,’ they send an inconsistent message to society. The lesbian and gay community will never be successful in fighting the pedophilia stereotype until we all stop condoning sex with young people.”

I know the six-term State Representative Phil Hinkle somewhat and such a detailed accusation was a shock to me and to all political observers. This is a very sad story. Our prayers should be that this exposure causes repentance and restoration for the legislator and his family. Now, more than ever, we need legislators of the highest moral caliber.
Posted by: Micah Clark AT 02:29 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Thursday, August 18 2011
This week a Marion County Judge refused to issue an injunction to stop school vouchers in Indiana. There are over 2,200 Hoosier students already enrolled into the Choice Scholarship Program, which offers up to $4500 to pay for private school tuition at one of over 200 private schools that have chosen to take vouchers.

The program helps lower income families afford to choose other educational opportunities, including Christian schools. The Indiana Civil Liberties Union and the Indiana State Teachers Association backed a lawsuit attempting to stop the program before this new school year.

The opponents of the program claim that it is unconstitutional because it allows tax dollars to go to religious schools. The state argued that the money goes to the families first, as their money, in which they then choose a school.


One interesting item is that the state argued (among several other points) over Article 8, Section 1 of Indiana Constitution. It states:

“Knowledge and learning, generally diffused throughout a community, being essential to the preservation of a free government; it should be the duty of the General Assembly to encourage, by all suitable means, moral, (my emphasis added) intellectual, scientific, and agricultural improvement; and provide, by law, for a general and uniform system of Common Schools, wherein tuition shall without charge, and equally open to all."

Attorney General Zoeller’s office successfully argued that the legislature was within its Constitutional guidelines because the choice program fell within the purpose of meeting those educational goals “by all suitable means.” Judge Michael Keele agreed, and refused to block the new law, saying the plaintiffs "failed to demonstrate any likelihood of success on the merits" of the case.

This is only round one in the battle. Expect the opponents to continue further legal action.
Posted by: Micah Clark AT 02:26 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 18 2011
An emotional Governor Mitch Daniels proved again that good leaders rise to the occasion in the most difficult of times. At the memorial service on Monday and over the weekend following the tragedy at the State Fair, the Governor repeatedly spoke for millions of Hoosiers who observed with him, “Our hearts are with you. My heart is full for those who acted in courageous ways. There was a hero every ten feet on Saturday night.”



The Governor was referencing the hundreds of concert goers who rather than run in fear, ran toward the devastation to help lift sections of the enormous stage which trapped scores of people killing five and injuring around 50 others who were there for a country music concert. It was a testimony to the best of character in the heartland of America. The service opened with worship songs, prayer from Lt. Governor Becky Skillman and wrapped up with the singing of Amazing Grace. No matter how hard the radical secularists try to bury our faith traditions, when tragedy occurs, it is only natural for many to turn to God. That too, is one of the very best characteristics of Indiana that I hope never disappears.

At AFA-IN and The Liberty Tree, our prayers go out to the families of those killed or injured by this tragic event and we hope yours will too.
Posted by: Micah Clark AT 02:23 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 17 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

Who knew Barack Obama knew so much about making cars?!  Not that we should be surprised, of course.  He is, after all, the "smartest president we've ever had."  Just a couple days ago, the Professor himself was in Minnesota on a campai...er, "conversation with the American people" tour financed with our tax dollars. 

While there, he had some helpful tips for all the folks who have been making cars for decades, but who clearly could learn a thing or two from Obama's wisdom:


The country's automakers should ditch their focus on SUVs and trucks in favor of smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles, President Obama said Monday.

"You can't just make money on SUVs and trucks," Obama said during a town hall forum in Cannon Falls, Minn. "There is a place for SUVs and trucks, but as gas prices keep on going up, you have got to understand the market. People are going to try to save money."

Obama has positioned the revival and reshaping of the auto industry as a major part of his administration's push to improve the economy and create jobs.

"When I came into office they were talking about the liquidation of GM and Chrysler, and a lot of folks said you can't help them, and it's a waste of the government's money to try and help them," Obama said Monday. "But what I said was, we can't afford to lose up to a million jobs in this country, particularly in the Midwest."

Which is why he is now attempting to manipulate them down a dead-end path that will result in the liquidation of up to a million of their jobs.

Those in the manufacturing world might want to pay extra close attention to these statements, even though they impact all of us.  The president of the United States does not determine by dictate what there is a place for and what there is not a place for in our economy.  The market dictates such things.

And notice also that the president uses as justification for his comments that "gas prices keep on going up."  We know the president is intentionally preventing the exploration and development of domestic fuel supplies that ensures gas prices remain high, and go higher.  We know that the president has been using the EPA to shackle business and industry with excessive regulations that make it too expensive for them to continue using fossil fuels.

Perhaps he is doing this because he believes that we could instantaneously switch over to "renewable energy" sources like wind and solar if only we had the political will or motivation.  If so, he is about the furthest thing from our "smartest president" as one could imagine.  But whatever the reason, the president has put the country on a kamikaze mission with our manufacturing and industrial base.

While claiming to be interested in "saving" the jobs of auto workers and manufacturers, his energy policy is writing their epithet as we speak.  And when it happens, he has his excuse all ready: "I told you we needed to stop building SUVs and build more Volts."
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 17 2011

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Daily Beast writer Michelle Goldberg has been watching the Republican presidential field closely.just for you.  You see, Michelle has a special gift to identify Christian theocrats - those wanting to make the Bible the Constitution and outlaw any form of religious freedom in the United States (something that would be against the commands of Scripture, interestingly enough).

And her theocrat-ometer is going ballistic in a recent piece where she "outs" a couple of these ne'er-do-wells, Rick Perry (of course) and Michele Bachmann:


[O]f the three most plausible candidates for the Republican nomination, two are deeply associated with a theocratic strain of Christian fundamentalism known as Dominionism. If you want to understand Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry, understanding Dominionism isn't optional.

Put simply, Dominionism means that Christians have a God-given right to rule all earthly institutions. Originating among some of America's most radical theocrats, it's long had an influence on religious-right education and political organizing.

Now, Goldberg wasn't overly interested in finding credible evidence to support such a wild accusation.  No, just making the claim seemed sufficient for her, and her editor.  Still, the intrepid little journalist traced this concerning philosophy back to its root:

Dominionism derives from a small fringe sect called Christian Reconstructionism, founded by a Calvinist theologian named R. J. Rushdoony in the 1960s.

[...]

Rushdoony pioneered the Christian homeschooling movement, as well as the revisionist history, ubiquitous on the religious right, that paints the U.S. as a Christian nation founded on biblical principles.

Apparently a little guilt by association was in order, eh Ms. Goldberg?  If you are a homeschooler or if you believe the country was founded on Christian principles (because you have done something radical like...read the words and writings of our country's founders), you must be part of Rushdoony's evil cabal.  

Never mind, of course, that Jesus commands his followers that his kingdom is NOT of this world.that he had come to set up a spiritual kingdom that conquered hearts, not a political kingdom to conquer nations.  Never mind that Scripture tells us that the old Mosaic law code was intended for one nation only and never prescribes it to the government of Gentile countries.  Never mind the fact that Christians can't agree on some basic doctrinal issues, so the idea of getting them to agree to one specific religious law code to enact on the masses is beyond ridiculous.

No ridiculousness was the order of the day for Ms. Goldberg.  If you're wondering if Goldberg bothered, as a liberal, to point out the real theocrats of radical Islam, you might be surprised to know that she did.  Of course, you wouldn't be surprised to know that she only brought it up in order to equate them with Christians. 

Nothing new.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 17 2011

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Anyone whose head doesn't ache from insanity every time an Obama administration official starts talking about jobs and the economy just isn't paying attention.  For instance, not enough can be made from the absolutely asinine proposition that continues to come forth from Obama, Inc. that unemployment checks from the government "creates jobs."


When I first heard Obama say this himself in an audio clip, I thought it had to be a slip of his tongue.  Surely it was a gaffe, right?  He just got confused as he bounced around topics, and didn't really mean to say something so ignorant.  Then I heard it from another Obama official.then another.  And now I'm reading it in the transcripts of the presidential press conference, where Obama's press secretary Jay Carney actually tried to explain how this works exactly in their minds.

The Washington Times reports:

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney explained Thursday that paying out unemployment checks "is one of the most direct ways to infuse money directly into the economy because people who are unemployed and obviously aren't running a paycheck are going to spend the money that they get. They're not going to save it, they're going to spend it." True, they probably will spend the money, on their mortgages, on food, and other necessary expenses. But Mr. Carney attributed miraculous qualities to these government handouts, saying "every place that, that money is spent has added business and that creates growth and income for businesses that leads them to decisions about jobs, more hiring."

Question...if this is the case, can Mr. Carney explain why it wouldn't be beneficial for the whole country to lose their jobs and become unemployed?  I know that's extreme and you might be tempted to blow it off as exaggerative bluster.  Don't.  Think it through.  If more unemployment checks makes for a healthier economy, at what point does that stop being the case...and why?

These are questions Carney nor Obama can answer, because when they try it reveals the idiocy of their premise that our jobs market is strengthened by government checks to unemployed people.  The Times explained what should be fairly obvious:

...unemployment benefits are paid in place of lost wages. They are smaller than the paychecks they replaced thus are not a net plus for the economy. They do not "create growth" or jobs, but at best do what they were intended to do, sustain workers at livable but substantially reduced income levels while they look for jobs. Yes they allow the government to pour money into the economy, but these days that means piling on more debt to the red ink that is preventing economic growth in the first place. 

That the President and his whole team of economic wizards doesn't realize this fairly simple economic reality is astounding.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 17 2011

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Anytime and every time liberals are pushing a godless candidate (or at least one who is more interested in playing 75 rounds of golf on Sunday than taking his family to church...hmmm, who could that be?), they can't contain themselves in pointing to the Constitutional prohibition against "religious tests" for office.

 

I've long contended that they either are guilty of woeful ignorance or inexcusable deception as they misrepresent why the Founders placed this ban on loyalty oaths in the Constitution.  But that's taking the discussion in a different direction than what deserves attention following the New York Times running of Timothy Egan's anti-Rick Perry piece. 

 

The column played off of major themes from Egan's more involved and elaborate mocking of both Perry and God that was posted at the Opinionator blog:

 

In the four months since Perry's request for divine intervention, his state has taken a dramatic turn for the worse.  Nearly all of Texas  is now in "extreme or exceptional" drought, as classified by federal meteorologists, the worst in Texas history.

 

Lakes have disappeared. Creeks are phantoms, the caked bottoms littered with rotting, dead fish.  Farmers cannot coax a kernel of grain from ground that looks like the skin of an aging elephant.

 

Is this Rick Perry's fault, a slap to a man who doesn't believe that humans can alter the earth's climate ?  God messin' with Texas? No, of course not.  God is too busy with the upcoming Cowboys football season and solving the problems that Tony Romo has reading a blitz.

For some reason, the Scripture "God will not be mocked" comes to mind reading this drivel.  But though Egan was clearly mocking what he sees as a silly superstitiuos belief in an all-powerful, transcendent Being, his real focus was on portraying Perry as a nut.  The left is scared spitless of Rick Perry and it's clear their first line of attack is going to be on his faith.


Which is what begs the interesting question: will anyone in the media hold the left-wing to their "no religious tests" standard for Perry?  The obvious answer is no, given that the media and the left-wing are the same thing.  But it is quite a depiction of the mindless inconsistency liberals choose to abide when it suits their political agenda.

 

After calling all the Republican presidential candidates the "Crazy eight caucus," Egan reserved special bashing for Perry for seemingly no reason beyond his faith:

To Jews, Muslims, non-believers and even many Christians, the Biblical bully that is Rick Perry  must sound downright menacing, particularly when he gets into religious absolutism. "As a nation, we must call upon Jesus to guide us through unprecedented struggles," he said last week.

 

As a lone citizen, he's free to advocate Jesus-driven public policy imperatives.  But coming from  someone who wants to govern this great mess of a country with all its beliefs, Perry's language is an insult to the founding principles of the republic.  Substitute Allah or a Hindu God for Jesus and see how that polls.

Those would be the founding principles of a republic that are inherently and quite obviously rooted in the Judeo-Christian ethic.  Which is why Perry's words are so similar to those echoed, in their official capacity as government leaders, by a countless list of Founding Fathers.  One can only imagine what Mr. Egan would have said about them.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 16 2011

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Michele Bachmann wins the nice, but fairly insignificant Iowa straw polls.  Tim Pawlenty drops out of the race.  Jon Huntsman's performance in the Iowa debate makes it seem like his candidacy is going to be a bizarre and short flame.  Ron Paul's obsession with telling everyone that Iran is no threat and that whatever threat they are is our fault makes his already outsider campaign appear more cult-driven than ever. 

 

But none of those emerging stories of the Republican campaign come close to having the impact on the race that this bit of news did:

 

Whatever you call it -- a "shake-up," a "game change," a "political earthquake," or "a new face on the scene" -- it's happening. Gov. Rick Perry is officially in the presidential race.

 

Speaking to a crowded hotel ballroom of conservative bloggers and more than 100 members of the media in South Carolina, the Texas governor unveiled a new tagline of his presidential contest: "It is time to get America working again."

 

'That's why, with the support of my family and unwavering belief in the goodness of America, I declare to you today as a candidate for president of the United States," he said.

 

Perry's remarks focused squarely on America's economic situation, and he held the Obama administration flatly responsible for sluggish job growth and the recent downgrade of the country's credit rating by Standard and Poor's.

 

"One in six work-eligible Americans cannot find a full-time job," Perry said. "That is not a recovery -- that is an economic disaster."

Perry announcing his intention to run wasn't a surprise after months of speculation, and weeks of informal acknowledgement he was in.  What was significant about his announcement, however, was that Perry revealed his very credible strategy: run on jobs.

 

Whatever others will say about Perry: that he is a former Gore supporter (from Gore's conservative days) turned Gore tormentor (Perry recently called Global Warming a "phony mess"), that he is a "nutty evangelical Christian," that he sounds too much like George W. Bush (the only thing that sounds the same is the Texas twang), that he is a staunch social conservative...it is clear that Perry has decided what he will say about himself: that he knows how to create an environment where jobs become plentiful.

 

And that is why I think he is such a formidable candidate.  He has the record to prove it, and as I wrote in a column a while back, he will offer the strongest possible contrast to Obama on that issue that conservatives could ever hope for.

 

Team Obama seems to know this also, which is why David Axelrod is already out attacking him.

 

There have been promising conservative candidates enter the presidential race before, but due to political ineptness, confusion or distraction, end up fizzling.  Perry's announcement with its laser-like focus on the deplorable jobs situation Obama has led us to tells me that's not going to happen with him.  That's got to have not just his primary opponents concerned, but also the man sitting in the Oval Office.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 16 2011

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It's a difficult title to assume: most clueless man in America.  Difficult because there is a never ending shortage of candidates, and because the country's most recognizable figure, President Barack Obama, seems to have such a stranglehold on the competition.  But if anyone can best him, it's Harry Reid:

Reid sat down with more than 30 Review-Journal staffers Friday afternoon for an hour-long Q&A session at the newspaper's offices. The bulk of the back and forth was dedicated to federal spending and how Congress might tame exploding budget deficits.

 

Reid blamed everything that ails Washington and the nation on Republicans. He slammed the GOP for its refusal to go along with tax increases as part of this month's debt-ceiling deal, saying hard-core fiscal conservatives are making it impossible to strike a long-term deal that slows the growth of the national debt.

 

Shortly after blaming Republicans for their refusal to "go along with tax increases," check out this "pot-meet-kettle" moment:

Reid left the indelible impression Friday that as long as he's leading the Senate Democrats, the Tea Party agenda is dead on arrival in his chamber. In exchange for a modicum of reduced growth in federal spending, Reid said someone will have to pay more. There will be [no] reductions and entitlement reforms without tax increases. He singled out the rich and oil companies as especially deserving of punishment.

Saying the Tea Party agenda, which is nothing more than ending our profligate government spending obsession, is dead on arrival might be difficult to enforce if the 2012 elections see more conservatives elected as a result of the movement's continued influence.  For his part, Reid doesn't think that will be an issue:

"The Tea Party was the result of a terrible economy," he said. "I've said that many times, and I believe that."

 

"That (the Tea Party) will pass. They will lose a number of seats next year."

Is he really that oblivious to what is happening outside of the Beltway?  Is he really unaware of how many Democrats are sprinting to the right on spending issues in their efforts to get re-elected?  Is he clueless to the fact that Democrats have far more seats to defend in their efforts to control the Senate through the next two election cycles than Republicans?  Is he really under the impression that Americans believe our out-of-control spending in Washington can be solved by taxing corporations or wealthy people more?

 

Sadly, yes, he probably is.  Which is why Mr. Obama should be worried that while he may lose the presidency to a conservative challenger in 2012, his hold on the title of "Most Clueless Man in America" is under a more immediate threat.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 16 2011

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You've heard the argument leveled at conservatives a hundred times if you've heard it once: "Quit trying to bring the government into people's bedrooms!  What people do in the privacy of their own homes is none of your business!"

 

Oddly enough, despite the vigor with which libertarians and liberals spout this garbage, conservatives believe that to a large degree.  Obviously if what is occurring in people's homes is a crime, that is a different matter.  But in case you'd forgotten, it's not conservatives who favor massive police powers for the state. 

 

 

And while this argument is the tried-and-true talking point for the homosexual lobby, anyone with a brain should be able to figure out it's not conservatives who are taking homosexuality out of the bedroom and making it front page news.  That would be...well...the homosexual lobby itself.

 

Yet another example comes from this weekend's Washington Post, where Petula Dvorak has a public bout of literary diarrhea.  She is opposing the homosexual lobby's recent demand that the children's program Sesame Street make beloved characters Bert and Ernie homosexual, arguing that it would be better if the show introduced a human homosexual couple instead:

Besides, we shouldn't rely on puppets to acknowledge our country's historic progress on same-sex relationships. And that brings us to a campaign I'd really like to see. It is time for "Sesame Street" to add a same-sex human couple to the show.

 

These are flesh-and-blood, genuine and increasingly legal unions. It's not something that should be represented by foam creatures.

 

That's tempting for some of the folks who are fumbling for a cute storybook way of teaching kids about same-sex relationships. You can read about Tango the penguin or hope that Bert and Ernie have a lovely wedding, but a more powerful lesson is simply seeing Sylvia and Sandra at school pickup, PTA meetings and the park every day, doing what all parents do.

 

Preschoolers will get this.

Yes, you read that right.  Preschoolers will get this.  Get what, Ms. Dvorak?  Why must our preschoolers be confronted with human sexuality in any way?  The very fact that subjecting preschoolers to homosexual propaganda is a noble cause to these activists should answer any questions about who is shoving "the bedroom" into the public's face.

 

This is an aggressive cultural revolution that is being attempted...not by conservatives, but by the left.  If you can't see that, you're as blind as a bat.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 16 2011

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Chris Matthews had that nervous, "I'm going to pretend like I'm not concerned while behind the plastered smile I'm quaking in my boots" look on his face.  The brave little Obama water-carrier quizzed experts as to who would be easier for Team Obama to attack: Rick Perry or Mitt Romney.


That, in and of itself, is quite a commendation on the seriousness of Perry's candidacy.  Romney has been running for this office since the 08 election was over.  He has been raising money with his eyes on the Oval Office in a way that no one else has.  He has constructed an impressive campaign apparatus and is widely observed to be the Republican front-runner who needs only stave off the attack arrows of conservative firebrands as he coasts across the finish line.

 


Enter Rick Perry and suddenly that changes.  It changes so much that Chris Matthews and those on the left start talking about him instantly in the same sentence with Romney.  Not that they're wrong to do so.  Perry outperformed Romney in the Iowa straw poll as a non-candidate!  And he's already polling right at Romney's heels in some key early primary states.

 

But beyond the polls and beyond the Matthews' "Team-o-Experts," what should be getting most attention from pundits is the obvious fear the thought of Perry puts into the Obama team.  Before Perry officially announced, the chief architect of Obama's 2008 fairy tale candidacy, David Axelrod, was out hammering away:

US President Barack Obama's top reelection strategist charged Friday that Republican White House hopeful and Texas Governor Rick Perry had "very little to do" with his state's economic success.

 

"There's a specific reason that Texas has done so well, and that's because the oil industry has done so well in the last few years, and the military has grown because of the challenges that we have had overseas," said David Axelrod.

 

"And so he's been the beneficiary of things that he had very little to do with," Axelrod told ABC television.

Make sure you follow this desperate strategy: Rick Perry cannot be given any credit for the economic results of his state...and Barack Obama cannot be given any blame for the economic results of the country.  Now that's a whale of a bumper sticker for the Obama campaign, isn't it?!

 

Axelrod went on to rip Perry for "suggesting" that perhaps Texas should secede from the union at one point.  I remember seeing this posted a while back in the comment section on my website, and I laughed my head off.  Is this really the best the left has to attack Perry?  Apparently so.  I love that.  Obama's hopes are pinned on Americans fearing Rick Perry may only be seeking the presidency so that he can lead a successful secession movement for his home state.

 

Now, remember, this is the same Axelrod who yucked it up with the crew on MSNBC's Morning Joe program about how RomneyCare was the model for ObamaCare.  I'm not suggesting that Obama is going to have an easy time with any eventual Republican nominee.  Obama's biggest concern politically should be the results of his disastrous policies and his own miserable record.

 

But the seriousness with which they seem to be taking Rick Perry's candidacy is not duplicated with any other potential Republican nominee.  That should say something to conservatives and Republicans.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 15 2011

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I was impressed.  Impressed all the way around.  An actual substance-filled, and entertaining presidential debate took place in Iowa before the straw poll last weekend between the Republican contenders for President.

 

All seven of them had their moments.  Oh wait, there were eight on the stage?  Who was that guy who looked extremely out of place and uncomfortable amidst conservatives?  The guy who thought it was a good idea to take a shot at Rick Perry for being a praying evangelical Christian in front of a crowd of evangelical Christians?  The guy who the media pretended was a "front-runner" when he entered the race despite only about 10 Republicans in the country who actually supported him?  Oh yeah, Jon Huntsman.  Yeah, not sure he had any good moments.

 

 

But the others were pretty impressive to varying degrees.  Here were my thoughts:

 

It's not really a surprise to me that Tim Pawlenty has left the race after this contest.  He needed to be the social conservative choice, but with Santorum and Bachmann, there was just no hope of that happening.  Bachmann clearly won the battle of Minnesota with this line, in response to Pawlenty's attempted jab at her lack of experience and leadership:

"Governor, when you were governor in Minnesota, you implemented cap and trade in our state, and you praised the unconstitutional individual mandate, and you called for requiring all people in our state to purchase health insurance that government would mandate. Third, you said the era of small government was over. That sounds a lot more like Barack Obama if you ask me. During my time in the United States Congress, I have fought all of these unconstitutional measures as well as Barack Obama. And I led against increasing the debt ceiling the last two months."

Ouch.  Beyond that, the real surprise of the night was the guy I thought came away the clear winner, Newt Gingrich.  Taking a question from Chris Wallace about the "mess" of his campaign, Newt was reminiscent of Reagan's famous, "I'm paying for this microphone" line:

"Let me say, first of all, Chris, that I took seriously Bret [Baier]'s injunction to put aside the talking points, and I wish you would put aside the 'gotcha' questions," Gingrich said.

"Like Ronald Reagan, who had 13 senior staff resign the morning of the New Hampshire primary and whose new campaign manager laid off 100 people because he had no money because the consultants had spent it. Like John McCain, who had to go and run an inexpensive campaign because the consultants spent it. I intend to run on ideas," Gingrich explained.

He adds: "I'd love to see the rest of tonight's debate asking us about what we would do to lead an America whose president has failed to lead instead of playing 'Mickey Mouse games.'"

"Speaker Gingrich, if you think questions about your record are 'Mickey Mouse,' I'm sorry. I think those are questions that a lot of people want to hear answers to, and you're responsible for your record, sir," Wallace responded.

"I think that there's too much attention paid by the press corps about the campaign minutia and not enough paid by the press corps to the basic ideas that distinguish us from Barack Obama," Gingrich said in a final rebuttal.

The crowd loved it, and there was much to love in Gingrich on this night.

 

But the line of the evening came from Rick Santorum who successfully knocked a question about his courageous stand for human life out of the ballpark.  Byron York posed the all-too-common position that there should be "exceptions" where children should be eligible to have their heads sawed off in the womb, like in the cases of rape and incest.  Santorum finally gave an answer way too many clueless or backwards or confused Republicans have been unable or afraid to give for far too long:

"You know, the Supreme Court of the United States on a recent case said that a man who committed rape could not be killed--could not be subject to the death penalty--yet the child conceived as a result of that rape could be," said Santorum. "That to me sounds like a country that doesn't have its morals correct. That child did nothing wrong. That child is an innocent victim."

There's simply no response a liberal, or a confused Republican, could give to that assessment.  Santorum was speaking truth to power (and evil).

 

Overall, here's how I graded the night:

 

Newt: A

Santorum: A-

Bachmann: B+

Cain: B

Romney: B-

Paul: C+

Pawlenty: C-

Huntsman: Does it matter?

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 15 2011

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As teenage unemployment rises above 50% in parts of the country, as consumer confidence is at its lowest level in over 30 years, as economists brace for a double-dip recession following Obama's "Summer of Recovery," as the United States has seen its credit rating downgraded for the first time in its history, it can't be surprising that the president's approval rating has dipped to a landslide defeat level of below 40%.

 

So how is he handling the news?  About like you would expect an intellectually challenged narcissist to handle it:

At least it wasn't Jesus.

 

At a small, exclusive New York City fundraiser Thursday night featuring the likes of Gwyneth Paltrow and movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, Obama compared himself and his agenda to that of Martin Luther King Jr.:

 

 

"And now that King has his own memorial on the Mall I think that we forget when he was alive there was nobody who was more vilified, nobody who was more controversial, nobody who was more despairing at times.  There was a decade that followed the great successes of Birmingham and Selma in which he was just struggling, fighting the good fight, and scorned, and many folks angry.  But what he understood, what kept him going, was that the arc of moral universe is long but it bends towards justice.  But it doesn't bend on its own.  It bends because all of us are putting our hand on the arc and we are bending it in that direction.  And it takes time.  And it's hard work.  And there are frustrations."

Oh my.  The only thing more concerning than such a gratuitous attempt to hide your own failures by climbing under the wing of a giant who fought for many of the same things Mr. Obama vehemently opposes, is that Barack Obama might actually believe these things he is saying.

 

We covered on the show last week the uncomfortable, but undeniable reality that our President just isn't that bright.  So it's not out of the realm of possibility that he has either been led to believe, or he has led himself to believe that he is a modern day version of the Civil Rights champion, King.

 

I would normally be inclined to feel sorry for someone with such delusions.  But given the economic calamity that Mr. Obama's policies continue to bring upon the innocent masses, I'm much more inclined to scream from the rooftops, "Isn't it 2012 yet?!" 

 

Mr. Obama, people are upset with you because you have no clue what you're doing.  They are upset with you because you snowed them during the 2008 campaign.  They are upset with you because you promised a new era of hope, but they have never felt so hopeless as after two and a half years of your failed leadership.  They are upset with you because you continue to lie about the ramifications of your policies when the truth is abundantly clear to everyone.  They are upset with you because promising to be a "different kind of politician," you have been the most bitter partisan the White House has welcomed in a long time.  They are upset with you because you blame your failures on your predecessor, all while failing to come up with any alternative plans or exhibiting anything remotely resembling leadership.  They are upset with you because while you castigate "the rich" for votes, you party with them and use their dollars to get try to hold onto the power you crave.

 

And they are upset with you for not realizing why they're upset with you, choosing instead to assume it's because you are a morally courageous pioneer who is being unfairly denounced by the ignorant masses.  We aren't ignorant Mr. President.  And there's nothing moral about the policies you have inflicted on us with the help of your Democrat cohorts.

 

As the author of this blog post put it:

Mr. Obama, I knew Martin Luther King. Martin Luther King was a friend of mine . . .

And if there one thing you ain't, Mr. O, it's Martin Luther King, Jr.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 15 2011

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In his politically momentous announcement to run for President, Rick Perry seemed to reveal a pretty simple, straight-forward idea hub for his campaign.  Four principles that he enacted in Texas, and whose results simply cannot be questioned by rational minds:

"America is not broken. Washington D.C. is broken. We need balanced budgets, we need lower taxes, we need less regulation, and we need civil justice reform. Those same four principles. Our country's most urgent need is to revitalize our economy, stop the generational theft that is going on with this record debt. I came to South Carolina because I will not sit back and accept the path that America is on. Because a great country requires a better direction. Because a renewed nation needs a new president. It is time to get America working again and that's why, with the support of my family and unwavering belief in the goodness of America, I declare to you today as a candidate for president of the United States."

 

Balanced budgets, low taxes, less regulation and legal reform.  Each of those elements Perry managed to enact in the state of Texas and the economic results have been staggering.  As Perry illuminated in his speech, at just 10% of the country's population, Texas has accounted for roughly 40% of the new jobs the country has created.

 

That's not a fluke.  It's not by chance.  It's the result of encouraging the private sector by getting government out of the way and creating an environment that welcomes and attracts entrepreneurs and risk takers. 

 

It is the single most contrasting element, among many, between the Perry philosophy and the Obama philosophy.  Perry is pro-business, Obama is pro-regulation.  Perry is pro-private sector, Obama is pro-public sector.  Perry is pro-market stability, Obama is pro-market uncertainty. 

 

The results speak for themselves.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, August 14 2011

The mob violence and destruction in London and other parts of England and the flash mob concerns being confronted by Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter have much in common. They are acts of anarchy where social norms and laws are replaced with self-centered greed, hate, and violence. The willful destruction of private property is nothing short of the logical consequences of the moral bankruptcy of liberalism and atheism. Participants seek nothing less than the persecution of those who build their lives and livelihoods on Biblical and traditional values.

 

 

In the absence of any moral compass, especially the foundation of Biblical Christianity, the breakdown of modern culture is only a question of time. Is it not interesting that since the debt-ceiling debates in America those opposing increased spending and taxation through legitimate and peaceful public discourse are branded as "terrorists" while mobs of vandals carry out destructive rampages throughout parts of England and America? When moral moorings are removed from a culture, such results are hardly surprising.

 

In one of many letters to Thomas Jefferson, John Adams wrote:

Without religion, this world would be something not fit to be mentioned in polite company. ...The most abandoned scoundrel that ever existed, never yet wholly extinguished his Conscience and while Conscience remains, there is some religion.

The religion to which John Adams made reference is Christianity. We have the unfortunate opportunity to witness in our lifetime the consequence of an extinguished conscience. The self-centered ideologies of liberalism and atheism have seen to that.

 

Is it not enlightening that Mayor Nutter addressed the crisis his city faces from the pulpit of a church on a Sunday morning? Is it not enlightening that when city leaders seek to enlist and galvanize public support to combat crime and other forms of anarchy, they seek audiences with Christian churchgoers and not groups of atheists?

"That's part of the problem in our community," he continued. "Let me speak plain: That's part of the problem in the black community." At the end of his talk, he directly addressed today's teenagers in a volcano of indignation that brought parishioners to their feet. "If you want us to respect you," he thundered, "take those doggone hoodies down, especially in summer," "pull your pants up and buy a belt," "comb your hair," "learn some manners," "keep your butt in school" and "extend your English vocabulary beyond the few curse words that you know." "If you go to look for a job," he continued, "don't go and blame it on the white folks or anyone else if you walk into somebody's office with your hair uncombed and your shoes untied or your pants half down, tattoos up and down your arms, on your face, on your neck. And you wonder why somebody won't hire you? They don't hire you because you look like you're crazy!" The third African-American mayor in Philadelphia's history, Nutter is a reformer who took over from an incompetent predecessor who blithely presided over murder-plagued "Killadelphia." He inveighs against vast social trends. The unraveling of the two-parent family and the diminution of adult authority go back decades. Nutter may be able to beat back the flash mobs, but the larger social disaster that is the context of such mayhem will endure.

Today's vigilante violence is but a taste of the full banquet that will befall us when the persecutors have their complete say.
Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 03:46 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, August 14 2011

I usually choose my lib-quote of the week from among the most outlandish statement I come across from the left. And there are always plenty to choose from since those living in the land of left-believe consistently display enormous gaps in critical thinking and/or seek to purposely deceive their true intentions from those not paying attention.

 

Still, every once in awhile, a liberal slips up and tells the truth.

 

 

The dynamic duo of Princeton University Dr. Cornel West and PBS talk show host Tavis Smiley have embarked upon a "poverty tour."  They are very disappointed with our president. There's too much poverty in America... so much that it could "lead to UK-like riots." [Nothing like being extorted. "Fork it over, folks with stuff. If you don't, the folks without the stuff they want are going to loot and burn and destroy your stuff and threaten your lives. So there are your choices: give us our stuff that we haven't earned or see your stuff destroyed."]

 

Keep in mind President Obama's most recent complaint against Congress. In fact, he reiterated it just this Saturday. Speaking about Congress in his weekly message, our president told Americans:

"I don't think it's too much for you to expect that the people you send to this town start delivering. And if you agree with me - whether you're a Democrat or a Republican or not much of a fan of either - let them know."

Those nasty T.E.A. Party Republicans; they won't compromise. If you want to discover the magnitude of infinity, next to the federal deficit, try counting the number of times the word "compromise" has been tossed around during the debt-ceiling debates and their aftermath. In fact, the refusal to compromise - meaning raise taxes in the current context - has been branded as nothing less than terrorism by those liberal masters of civility.

 

Now comes along Mr. Tavis Smiley on his "poverty tour" who slips up and gives us liberal truth and this week's featured lib-quote:

I know what the president is up against, but I think too often he compromises, too often he capitulates. I think the Republicans know that. I think they laugh when he's not around.

So the president's complaint - the dissatisfaction with which Americans are supposed to bombard their Representatives and Senators - is that there is not enough compromise.

 

But Mr. Tavis Smiley, champion of liberal truth that he is, tells us that the problem is too much compromise.

 

The only time that liberals are interested at all in compromise is when Americans begin recognizing and experiencing the consequences of liberal ideology and behavior. Then, and only then, do liberals value compromise because without it, they would become extinct.

 

P.S. Here is an interesting side note: Mr. Tavis Smiley's reported net worth is 10 million dollars. I wonder how much he left behind in each of the 19 cities he visited.
Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 02:02 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, August 14 2011

"Seek the Lord while He may be found; call on Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the Lord, and He will have mercy on him, and to our God, for He will freely pardon." - Isaiah 55:6-7

 

My devotional this week celebrates the birth of a nation other than the United States of America. That nation, born on July 9, 2011, is the Republic of South Sudan. Franklin Graham witnessed their celebration of independence:

In a ceremony attended by the head of the United Nations, dozens of heads of state, and over a quarter of a million people, we heard frequent prayers, Scripture references, and even a military marching band playing "I Have Decided to Follow Jesus."

 

President Salva Kiir said in his inaugural address, "Let us give praise to Almighty God for having made it possible for us to witness this day. We have waited 56 years for this day. It is a dream that has come true!"

 

There was a time when America sought the Lord while He could be found. A report from the Senate Judiciary Committee to the Congress of the United States on January 19, 1853, declared:

We are a Christian people... not because the law demands it, not to gain exclusive benefits or to avoid legal disabilities, but from choice and education; and in a land thus universally Christian, what is to be expected, what desired, but that we shall pay due regard to Christianity.

Sadly, as Americans have retreated from such a glorious faith, we have also retreated from a glorious beginning and are witnessing less and less the presence, blessing, and mercy of God within our own land.

 

Instead of rejecting the loving will of our Creator, the South Sudanese embrace the mercy and pardon that God pours out on any nation that calls upon His name. Consider the first verse of their new national anthem:

Oh God!

We praise and glorify You

For your grace on South Sudan

Land of great abundance

Uphold us united in peace and harmony.

Dr. Daniel Madit Thon Duop, who left Sudan at age 13 and returned as a surgeon trained through Samaritan's Purse, testified:

Our crime of being a Christian in the united Sudan is over. Our dignity as human beings will never be touched again. Only God Almighty and the people of the Republic of South Sudan will be responsible for the destiny of this newborn nation.

Perhaps in the not-too-distant future, Americans will once again discover the light of the Lord as Christian missionaries from South Sudan point us back to His saving grace.

 

Lord, by Your hand entire nations are moved. We lift to You with thanksgiving the new life of independence You have given to our Brothers and Sisters in South Sudan. We grieve that in our own nation, America, the evil and wicked have found ways to push You aside and to trample Your everlasting justice underfoot. Perhaps we will learn from Your servants in South Sudan to once more to honor and glorify You. We pray for Your peace to rest upon them; we pray for Your peace to return to us. In the name of Christ our Lord we pray. Amen.
Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 11:42 am   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Saturday, August 13 2011

Well, here we go again. The American economy is clearly telegraphing its slowdown. Massive bailout stimulus money has done about all it's going to do. Dangerously overextended sovereign economies are dragging needed capital away from nations that could be reinvesting in their own national economy. Nations that have needlessly driven themselves deep into debt have little or no resources to use to maintain their own economic stimulation. With such signs of another round of economic malaise, debate over whether we slip into another technical recession is a moot point.

 

In response to recession fears, editorial columns are reminding us once more that if we, the American consumers, become too pessimistic, we will "scare ourselves into a recession." Such is the viewpoint of the editorial board of one of my local newspapers, The Kokomo Tribune.

Some analysts fear the drop in the stock market will cut overall spending and drop the economy's already sluggish annual growth rate. Others fear Americans will wind up scaring themselves into a second recession... Clearly, it makes sense in times like these to put back some money for a rainy day. Buying things you can't afford is never a good idea. Still, if you really need that car and you have the resources to buy it, go ahead and spend some money. You'll be doing the economy a favor.

Never mind that in order to buy votes, our politicians have convinced Americans for quite some time that they have a right to stuff they have not earned. As some have taken this to heart, that diminishing sector of Americans who still believe that prosperity comes through actual innovation and work find that the rightful rewards for their labor are siphoned off more and more to pay for the stuff that others "cannot afford."

 

Never mind that according to global warming alarmists the typical American citizen needs a government that will cut back their use of energy through higher taxes, more regulation, and more government funded "alternative" energy money pits.

 

Never mind that in the last recession, our central planners decided that the way to respond to the drastic economic slowdown and recession was to take our money away from us and hand it over to the corporations and government pals who were instrumental in creating the debacle in the first place.

 

Never mind that instead of allowing a marketplace to allow natural economic dynamics to provide correction to sector excesses, our leadership decided to buy out private sector risk and impose it on all American citizens, thus engaging in financial pedophilia.

 

Instead of engaging in responsible journalism that would alert Americans to the root of our economic dangers, articles like this across the fruited plane suggest that common folks choosing to act like responsible adults will be the cause of any second recession. How much sense does this make?

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 06:49 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 12 2011

The more columns written by liberals I read, the more I am convinced that they pay not attention to what they write. Reading comprehension must have been a bypassed topic in their education process.

 

Addressing the growing opposition to tyranny in Belarus, columnist Peter Goldmark writes:

Like the movements now dubbed Arab Spring, the Belarusian opposition relies heavily on social-networking websites for instant communication. And the unrest in Belarus is fueled by economic problems as well as the drive for political freedom. The economy, which is 70 percent state-owned, is slumping badly, and Belarus has applied to the International Monetary Fund for emergency financial aid.


Indicative of nations where citizens are finding ways to protest against their respective form of totalitarianism, citizens in Belarus face political and economic hardship created and perpetuated by a state controlled economy. We find this in nation after nation: Saudi Arabia, Libya, Egypt, and other Middle Eastern countries; Cuba, Venezuela, and other Latin and South American nations; Greece, Italy, Spain, Ireland, and other debt-riddled European lands.

 

The list is far more extensive than it should be. The greater the extent of state-run central planning, the greater the economic woes and misery.

 

Even though they write about it as they applaud efforts to bravely stand up to tyranny, liberals turn right around and demand that the ills Americans are facing stem from a lack of central planning and federal government control of the private sector.

 

In another article, Mr. Goldmark pens:

What's at issue is whether we can govern ourselves. If we run up our national debt, like Greece, until it overwhelms us, people who lend to us will charge much higher interest rates (making it even harder to trim the deficit), and then some day they will not lend to us at all. Imagine a meeting of the Chinese politburo where they debate what kind of austerity measures to demand in return for a U.S. bailout.

Calling Republican Representatives opposing increased taxes and spending "extremists," Mr. Goldmark indicates consistently that he wants to see more of our national economy fall under state control.

 

Sad, isn't it, that liberals fail to connect even with their own observations? In one country, a state-owned economy is bad, but in our own country, we don't yet have enough state control over our economy. I guess we don't have enough tyranny to suit them.

 

Liberals need to read, and comprehend, what they write.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 05:44 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 12 2011

Speaking of abortion, a new poll from Gallup has some very interesting findings. The proponents of abortion often claim that most Americans are "pro-choice" when it comes to abortion. There are recent surveys challenging this assertion in terms of the self-identification between being pro-life or pro-choice. Even if most Americans are "pro-choice," it probably doesn't mean what you think or what abortion advocates imply.

The Gallup survey of "pro-choice" Americans actually finds that most of these people agree with pro-life Americans on nine significant areas. For example, 86% of "pro-choice" individuals favor informed consent legislation which gives women information about abortion and alternatives beforehand. Two-thirds (63%) of "pro-choice" Americans favor banning the grisly partial birth abortion procedure. Sixty-percent support parental consent laws for minors seeking an abortion. Half (52%) of "pro-choice" Americans want abortions to be made illegal after the second trimester and 79% want third trimester abortions outlawed. One major difference is that most (64%) "pro-choice" Americans support abortion as a means of birth control in the first trimester.

As noted in previous surveys, Gallup has also reconfirmed that those who attend regular religious services ("churchgoers") are twice as likely to be pro-life compared to those who rarely or never attend church services.

Posted by: Micah Clark AT 04:16 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 12 2011

In light of the data above, a logical question one may ask is why is American culture so pro-gay and morally decadent in virtually every way imaginable? May I suggest that the one-in-four of Americans who identify themselves as evangelical Christians are not following the Biblical directive to be "salt and light."  A staggering majority, between 76% and 78%, of Americans still identify themselves a Christians.

Why, given such large demographic numbers, is the culture so hostile to basic traditional values, parents, children, faith, etc?  There are several reasons for this problem.  One of them was found in a survey of pastors from Your Church Magazine that I mentioned in a recent weekly AFA-IN e-mail. The survey found that more than half of the ministers (55%) surveyed admitted that they would not preach at all or only sparingly on certain subjects. Nearly four-in-ten (38%) listed politics as the top subject they would avoid. One-in-four said that they would not mention homosexuality. When it came to the issue of abortion, 18% said that they would not mention this subject from the pulpit. Nearly one-in-ten said that they would not mention the subject or doctrine of Hell.

It is not as though God does not have things to say about these subjects and the issues of the day as revealed in His Word. The primary reason cited for avoiding certain subjects was that it might negatively impact church attendance. Yet, if the pulpits of our nation are silent on the issues its congregants confront daily in news headlines and the culture, how can we expect folks to live counter-culturally rather than mirroring everything around them?

(By the way, I am very excited about a new book coming out in a few weeks from Hoosier talk show host, Peter Heck, precisely about this issue of being salt and light in the world and taking back the culture. You can learn more about his book here: http://www.peterheck.com/78)

The church serves a role as the conscience of a nation, and unlike most government programs, faith changes lives from the inside out. Still, cultural change does not rest solely at the feet of the church. This is where groups like AFA of Indiana play a vital part. Your financial and prayer support of AFA-IN is always welcome and helpful. If you would like to stand with us, you can make a tax-deductible donation online or mail one to us at: PO Box 40307, Indianapolis, IN 46240.

Posted by: Micah Clark AT 11:20 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 12 2011

I had a media interview late last week in regard to new US Census Bureau data showing numbers homosexual households in Indiana. When asked if I was surprised at the numbers, I said yes, not at their large size, but at how that minority are given the disproportional political and cultural influence homosexuals wield.

I have similar numbers from the year prior to those the reporter cited, and they are revealing. (Keep in mind that a recent Gallup poll found that a majority of Americans mistakenly believe that 25% of the US population is homosexual or bi-sexual. In reality that number is less than 3%.)

In Indiana, based upon Census Bureau data released in April 2010, there were only 10,200 same-sex couples living together in Indiana. Contrast this with 1,251,500 married Hoosier couples and same-sex couples account for just three-tenths of one percent of the household population in Indiana. In state after state, this percentage is nearly the same. Nationally the percentage of same-sex couples compared to married households is only 0.4%.

Some would argue that if homosexuals currently living together and therefore most likely to marry are so few, what is the harm of un-defining marriage. (For all of their claims of needing to redefine marriage  when given the chance to "marry" in Europe or in states like Massachusetts, relatively few homosexuals actually do so. Most reject marriage, raising questions about their claims of disadvantage, denied rights, property sharing difficulties and marriage inequality.)

The real question is if the numbers are so small, why disrupt society by further devaluing marriage, rewriting school curricula, limiting religious speech, closing faith-based charities and other problems associated with same-sex marriage just to appease a very vocal, yet small 0.3% of cohabiting population? What of other behaviors and lifestyle choices? Must marriage be redefined to accommodate them too?

Given the societal importance of marriage and the traditional family, discarding the logical time-tested boundaries of marriage to appease a vocal, and tiny special interest group when poll after poll shows most Americans want marriage to remain as it always has been truly is a radical notion.

Posted by: Micah Clark AT 11:18 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 12 2011

This week, 41 members of Congress signed on to a federal appeals court brief that defends Indiana state law preventing Hoosier tax dollars from going to subsidize the abortion industry.

The friend of the court brief from the American Center for Law and Justice follows an earlier brief from the Thomas Moore Law Center in which 60 state legislators signed on to defend the new law. The legal briefs are part of the state's appeal of a lower court ruling by Judge Tanya Walton Pratt, which put the new law on hold and restored tax funding to Planned Parenthood.

The ACLJ brief argues for Indiana's right to set parameters for Medicaid recipients. They note, "Federal Medicaid statutes and regulations give States broad discretion to craft the rules applicable to their Medicaid programs. Congress left intact the States' authority to determine what makes an entity qualified to provide Medicaid services, 42 U.S.C. § 1396a(p)(1), while ensuring that Medicaid recipients may utilize any practitioner deemed to be qualified under State law, 42 U.S.C. § 1396a(a)(23). Since HEA 1210 does not limit a beneficiary's ability to choose among providers that are deemed to be qualified, it is consistent with federal Medicaid law."

This state's rights argument has been mentioned in many news reports. Perhaps more interesting is another argument in the ACLJ brief that urges the 7th U.S. Court of Appeals to overturn the lower court decision. It attacks Planned Parenthood and the ACLU's "novel claim that abortion providers have a constitutional right to perform abortions and receive public funds; if accepted, this argument would unduly restrict the policy discretion that Congress and state and local governments have to decide how to spend public funds." Calling the abortion industry's audacious claim to a constitutional right to our tax dollars "novel" is kind to say the least.

The ACLJ brief is signed by the following members of the U.S. House of Representatives:
Michele Bachmann, Larry Bucshon, Dan Burton, Francisco "Quico" Canseco, Michael Conaway, John Fleming, Bill Flores, Randy Forbes, Virginia Foxx, Trent Franks, Scott Garrett, Vicky Hartzler, Jeb Hensarling, Tim Huelskamp, Randy Hultgren, Lynn Jenkins, Bill Johnson, Walter Jones, Jim Jordan, Mike Kelly, Steve King, John Kline, Doug Lamborn, Jeff Landry, James Lankford, Robert Latta, Kenny Marchant, Thaddeus McCotter, Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Jeff Miller, Alan Nunnelee, Ron Paul, Mike Pence, Joe Pitts, Mike Pompeo, Todd Rokita, Chris Smith, Lamar Smith, Marlin Stutzman, Glenn Thompson, and Todd Young.

Posted by: Micah Clark AT 08:14 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 11 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

I have to admit that I've never been able to fully bring myself to believe that Barack Obama is intentionally harming America.  Don't get me wrong, I believe his policies are obviously harmful to our country.  I believe that he is a committed economic socialist, who tempers the degree to which he advocates socialism in compliance to what he sees the tenor the times to be.  His worldview does seem to indicate a fairly negative view of the United States, and it's clear that he does not even understand the concept of American exceptionalism.  But that is still a far cry from having a deep-seated hatred for America and someone who is surreptitiously trying to destroy her.

 

But the strength of that position has rested on the obvious evidence of Barack Obama's pursuance of policies that are clearly harming America and Americans.  So what else explains his obsession with ramping up policies that clearly aren't working?  Wall Street Journal columnist Bret Stephens has finally had the courage to say what I think most of us know:

 

When it comes to piloting, Barack Obama seems to think he's the political equivalent of Charles Lindbergh, Chuck Yeager and?in a "Fly Me to the Moon" sort of way?Nat King Cole rolled into one. "I think I'm a better speech writer than my speech writers," he reportedly told an aide in 2008. "I know more about policies on any particular issue than my policy directors. And I'll tell you right now that I'm . . . a better political director than my political director."

 

On another occasion?at the 2004 Democratic convention?Mr. Obama explained to a Chicago Tribune reporter that "I'm LeBron, baby. I can play at this level. I got game."

 

Of course, it's tempting to be immodest when your admirers are so immodest about you. How many times have we heard it said that Mr. Obama is the smartest president ever? Even when he's criticized, his failures are usually chalked up to his supposed brilliance. Liberals say he's too cerebral for the Beltway rough-and-tumble; conservatives often seem to think his blunders, foreign and domestic, are all part of a cunning scheme to turn the U.S. into a combination of Finland, Cuba and Saudi Arabia.

 

I don't buy it. I just think the president isn't very bright.

Bingo.  I know how offensive that will be to some, but it's becoming the fairly obvious answer.  I don't think Obama is secretly trying to undo America.  I think he is undoing America because he's not very bright, but is under the impression that he is.  That dangerous combination is manifesting itself in deadly ways for the U.S. economy.

 

Stephens' piece is worth a full read.  In fact, I did something I hardly ever do, and read it in its entirety for my radio audience.  He tackles Obama's perceived rhetorical skills, his actions as a political tactician, his media treatment and his ability to make course corrections.  They all lead to the same verdict:

Much of the media has spent the past decade obsessing about the malapropisms of George W. Bush, the ignorance of Sarah Palin, and perhaps soon the stupidity of Rick Perry. Nothing is so typical of middling minds than to harp on the intellectual deficiencies of the slightly less smart and considerably more successful.

 

But it takes actual smarts to understand that glibness and self-belief are not sufficient proof of genuine intelligence. Stupid is as stupid does, said the great philosopher Forrest Gump. The presidency of Barack Obama is a case study in stupid does.

It doesn't take too long in surveying the barren landscape of our society to realize Stephens is right.  And before you recoil at the suggestion that we have a dim bulb in the White House, consider the only alternative that exists: that he is intentionally seeking to undermine and rip apart the country.  Neither option is good, but I choose to believe the former.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 11 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

The accusation that Republicans are "terrorists" wasn't quite enough for the folks on the left, apparently.  On MSNBC, one of their hosts decided to dial it up a notch:

MSNBC's Thomas Roberts implied Tuesday that members of Congress who oppose efforts to inject more government spending into the economy, as President Barack Obama proposed recently, are committing an "act of treason."

 

"Why don't people look at that as an act of treason?" the daytime anchor asked the Washington Post's Ezra Klein, who shrugged off the accusation.

 

 

"I don't think what happens is Mitch McConnell and John Boehner retire to their volcano lair and plot how to doom the American economy," replied the liberal blogger.

 

While brushing aside Roberts' smear, Klein noted that since the "reality of politics" dictates that Republicans are "in better shape if the economy's doing poorly and Obama looks weak," they have little incentive to compromise on a short-term stimulus package.

"An act of treason" because conservatives don't want to shipwreck the economy further with more spending that we can't afford?  A stronger case, Thomas, could be made for the opposite.  Intentionally attempting to further bury future generations under an already insurmountable pile of debt sounds a lot closer to having it in for your country than attempting to prevent that reality, don't you think?

 

Nonetheless, Mr. Roberts should have realized that if he couldn't even get liberal writer Klein to bite on it, he was fighting a losing battle with such an outlandish claim.  Not that he didn't get a little assistance.  Left-winger Ron Insana (the yayhoo that does daily market updates on our flagship station) chimed in with his two cents to support Roberts:

The one thing that has been sold and believed to be true right now is the notion that deficit reduction in the short-run will somehow help this economy, which is not running on all cylinders. That is flatly untrue. If you were to throw hundreds of thousands of government workers out of their jobs, in an economy where there are 4.6 applicants for every job available, the unemployment rate will go up.

Not surprisingly, Insana didn't offer any specific Republican or Republican plan that would have the effect of "throw[ing] hundreds of thousands of government workers out of their jobs."  But you don't have to actually back up your wild accusations when you're criticizing Republicans on MSNBC.  Especially when you're on with a host that has already suggested the right is treasonous.

 

Such remains the journalistic integrity of the MSNBC network.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 11 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

Something pretty significant happened Tuesday night in Wisconsin, and its results will quite possibly make an impact around the country:

A stand by Wisconsin Republicans against a massive effort to oust them from power could reverberate across the country as the battle over union rights and the conservative revolution heads toward the 2012 presidential race.

Of the six recall elections, Republicans held their seats in four of them.  And one of the two they lost would have been tough to hold under normal circumstances given that the incumbent Republican was caught up in a messy divorce and affair with a staffer.  So why is this a substantial victory?  Tabitha Hale explains it best:

 

When Governor Scott Walker and the Republican legislature were elected, the state of Wisconsin was over $3.8 billion in debt. The people of Wisconsin elected them to fix the problem. They elected them to create jobs. That is exactly what they did.

 

Last month, half of the jobs created in the United States were created in the state of Wisconsin. Half. Think about the magnitude of that. While the U.S. has maintained an unemployment of over 9% since the beginning of President Obama's term, Wisconsin has, in just 6 months, balanced the budget, created tens of thousands of jobs, and made a rapid turnaround that Washington seems to think is impossible.

 

So why backlash? Why have there been $14 million in attack ads run against the Governor and the Wisconsin Republicans? Put simply, unions and power hungry political types are afraid that others will see how well it works. Now, instead of allowing the state to correct its problem and be a road map for the rest of the country, they are so shaken up that they are trying to recall the legislators for doing exactly what they were elected to do. Heaven forbid other governors make the same reforms and balance the budget like Scott Walker did! The unions can't handle the thought of losing their ability to buy elections and bully workers.

 

They've poured millions of dollars into these races. They organized protesters. They dominated the Wisconsin airwaves with scare propaganda about Tea Party types who have held the government hostage. They've invented sob stories about how teachers are suffering at the hands of the job-killing Republicans.

 

The truth? Most schools have managed to dodge layoffs and cuts. The Kaukauna Area School District turned a $400,000 deficit into a $1.5 million surplus. They did it "by implementing the new contributions from employees, but also by modifying other aspects of the teachers' workload, business manager" Bob Schafer said. "The district required educators to teach six hours a day instead of five, took them from two preparation periods down to one, and eliminated four paid days: one teacher work day and three paid holidays."

 

In other words, the government was forced to do what every other business has to do, especially in hard times: They figured out how to operate efficiently.

And it appears that the voters of Wisconsin, despite Big Labor's best efforts, have rewarded the Republicans for responsible leadership.  This is a huge victory for common sense and fiscal sanity, and a crushing defeat for the already desperate socialist agenda of the modern labor union bosses.  What an incredible waste of their members' dues has once again been on display in their highly partisan war against the financial well being of the state of Wisconsin.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 11 2011

Like most in the political world, U.S. Senate candidate from Indiana, Richard Mourdock had something to say about the recent U.S. credit rating downgrade by S&P's.  Unlike many in the political world, Mourdock seemed to understand the lesson that should come from it:

"This downgrade is the direct result of raising the debt limit on Tuesday, August 2, without providing for substantive cuts in spending. The White House and many in Congress failed in their jobs by settling for a political compromise rather than seeking a fiscal resolution. They avoided the tough decisions on real cuts in spending by simple kicking 'the tin can of responsibility' further down the road. The downgrade reminds us that failing to act has consequences."

 

Mourdock reserved strong words for his primary opponent, Republican Richard Lugar for being part of the Washington culture that led to this issue.  He also called upon President Obama to fire Treasury Secretary Geithner.

 

In related news, the Citizens United PAC officially endorsed Mourdock's primary challenge to Lugar, and the Club for Growth released a poll showing Mourdock with a slim edge over Lugar at this time, despite a large financial disadvantage.

 

I invited Senate candidate Richard Mourdock onto the show for a conversation about all this and more.

 

Hear the full interview here.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Wednesday, August 10 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

At some point, I think it would be helpful for someone on the left to explain to me exactly what are all of our "constitutional rights."  It never ceases to amaze me how many new ones they dream up on a yearly basis. 

 

Clearly they believe that it is a constitutional right to kill children in the womb.  And they believe that it is a constitutional right to marry anything or anyone you want to marry.  And they believe it is a constitutional right to have healthcare.  And it is a constitutional right to have a job.  And it is a constitutional right to have a "living wage" (meaning, of course, you don't have the obligation to provide for your family...such provision must be mandated by the government).

 

Keep in mind, every time the word "right" is invoked, it implies that if you don't have those things, you are being wronged or deprived unfairly.  It implies that the government has an obligation to protect those things (or, as the left has blown up this term through the years, the more appropriate phrase becomes "provide" those things rather than "protect").

 

And now we have a new one:

The Supreme Court decided decades ago that access to birth control is a constitutional right. Now, the Obama administration's Department of Health and Human Services has decided that access to "free" birth control is a right, too. Under new HHS regulations, which the department is authorized to create under Obamacare, insurance plans will be required to cover birth control ? including the morning-after pill "ella," which seems to work as an abortifacient in some cases ? with no co-pay. The rule will take effect Aug. 1, 2012, or later.

 

Of course, insurance companies don't provide anything for "free." Any time they cover a new service or eliminate co-pays, they charge higher premiums to make up the lost revenue. So the department is forcing people who do not use birth control to subsidize it, through higher premiums, for people who do.

Of course, but that's only fair.  It is a "right" after all.  Now, another interesting question is why was this declaration by the Obama government necessary?

Also, it's difficult to see what problem this is supposed to address. There is no evidence whatsoever that under current law, women or couples have trouble affording birth control. Condoms are cheap, and many government agencies and private organizations give them away for free. Private insurers cover birth-control pills, albeit with a co-pay, and state Medicaid programs typically cover them for the poor. No research indicates that making birth control even less expensive than it is now will decrease unwanted pregnancies or abortion rates.

In other words, there is no good reason for this action by government.  Yet, arbitrary government action has now taken place that will cost you and I more money in our insurance premiums.  And what do we have to thank for it?  You guessed it:

Conservatives warned that the passage of Obamacare presaged a government takeover of Americans' health-care decisions. These new regulations constitute further evidence: They interfere in the market, and they were formulated by unelected bureaucrats. They are yet one more reason that Obamacare deserves to be repealed.

And we haven't even opened up the can of worms that comes when we start talking about religious rights of conscience for those institutions, hospitals and clinics that don't believe in the practice of birth control.

 

It's amazing how many problems liberals create through government as they promise to use it to solve all our problems.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 10 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

Psalms 11:3 warns us, "When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?"  Take out the root, and you take out the tree.  With this in mind, it shouldn't be any surprise that anti-Christian voices from the political left are taking dead aim at the book of Genesis - the foundation point of the Christian belief system.  Destroy a belief in God's special creation, destroy a belief in the fall of man, and you totally undermine the Gospel message...the heart of Christianity.

 

 

That's exactly what seemed to be the objective of NPR's recent "Morning Edition," as they welcomed on several evangelical scholars who expressed their doubts in the legitimacy and accuracy of the book of Genesis.  What was particularly galling about the NPR report was that they termed many of these unfundamentalists, "conservative."  Yeah, no joke.

Host Steve Inskeep used this bizarre label, while correspondent Barbara Bradley Hagerty cited a theology teacher who denies the fall of man into sin as an example of one of these "conservatives" who "want their faith to come into the 21st century."

Yes, that whole "the same yesterday, today, and forever" thing was just so yesterday.  Let's get hip and join the church of what's happenin' now, shall we?  Who needs doctrine, who needs truth, who needs a fixed point of reference anyway?  Just throw in some smart lighting, give me a rock band on stage, put up some modern art, hand me a latte and read from Origin of Species and maybe a little poetry from Silvia Plath, wrap it all up in a package and call it church, and I'll be spiritually fulfilled.  That's just as good as anything those ancient books can give us, right?  Fools.

After Inskeep's introduction, which also noted how "for many evangelicals, a historical Adam and Eve is a critical part of their theology," Hagerty almost immediately turned to Dennis Venema of Trinity Western University in Canada and asked, "How likely is it that we all descended from Adam and Eve?" He replied, in part, "Not likely at all."

 

The NPR journalist didn't mention any of Venema's belief background during the report, but the July/August 2010 edition of the FaithToday publication cited the biologist's own label of himself as a "evolutionary creationist."

What?!  I'm assuming this is the fancy phrase Venema has come up with to try to muddy the waters here and undefine important terminology.  It's bad enough that Darwinists have hijacked the term "evolution" - a term that depending on what type of evolution you're talking about, it totally accepted in fundamentalist Christian (creationist) belief.  Micro-evolution, for example, is nothing more than adaptation of a species.  That is, changes occurring within a species - without the introduction of new information.  Species changing into different species (something science has never observed) is macro-evolution, or Darwinism.  That is what creationists (and those who follow the observable evidence) reject.

After a second clip from Venema, Hagerty stated that he is "part of a growing cadre of Christian scholars who say they want their faith to come into the 21st century." She then played a clip from John Schneider, a former theology teacher at Calvin College, who, according to the correspondent, "says it's time to face facts: there was no Adam and Eve, no serpent, no apple, no fall that toppled man from a state of innocence."

 

Ah yes, well thank you professor Schneider.  Rest assured, I have no reservations about throwing out a few thousand years of Christian orthodoxy and widely held doctrinal truth simply because you decided you wanted a few pats on the back with your secular chums, and maybe a few research grants, or maybe because your academic sensibilities were worn thin by a desperate need to be applauded by men for conforming to the world's spirit of the age.

 

Because here's the problem with Dr. Schneider's assessment if you're a Bible-believing Christ follower...it was actually addressed by one of the few voices of rationality NPR hosted, Dr. Albert Mohler:

MOHLER: Without Adam, the work of Christ makes no sense whatsoever in Paul's description of the Gospel, which is the classic description of the Gospel we have in the New Testament.

Here's what he means: Paul explains that just as sin entered the world through one man, Adam...and death through sin, so salvation was accomplished through one man, Jesus.  Death through sin is kind of the key part there.  The gospel message hinges on the fact that the wages of sin is death.  Death entered the world as a punishment for sin.  That is why Christ's death on the cross makes sense...it was a substitutionary death to take the place of sinners. 

 

The problem with Schneider and all the other "Christian" scholars who want to weave in the humanistic teachings of Darwin with the faith, while dismissing Genesis as fiction, is that their beliefs require death before sin.  If all these creatures that were evolving into man were dying off and being eliminated through the survival of the fittest, death was obviously present before sin entered the world.  But if death didn't enter the world as a result of sin, then Christ's substitutionary death is pointless and senseless.  If death didn't start with Adam, salvation doesn't end with Christ. 

 

This is why the Psalmist warns us to guard our foundations.  When we destroy them, we destroy everything we claim to believe in.  No wonder the atheist so fervently attacks the Genesis account.  How sad they are aided and abetted by those wearing the name of Christ, but who jump at the chance to undermine his Gospel on NPR.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 10 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

It's been a bad couple weeks for the Warmers.

 

 

The other day on the radio show I mentioned this story in passing, but it deserves a closer look given its potential impact on the unfolding collapse of the global warming scam.  You remember the heart-wrenching scenes of melting glaciers and drowning polar bears that became the face of the Warmer movement?  Well, not surprisingly, it seems all that may have been as accurate as the sea-level measurements and the hockey stick graphs:

Every day it seems new evidence emerges that the "evidence" for global warming has been exaggerated, manufactured or just plain wrong.

 

Take the case of Charles Monnett of the US Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement. On July 18, Monnett -- a longtime poster boy for global-warming orthodoxy -- was put on leave pending an investigation into the "integrity" of his work.

 

...

 

Monnett and (co-researcher Jeffrey) Gleason claimed this was the first known observation of polar bears apparently drowning after being forced to swim long distances in the open sea. Naturally, they saw global warming -- which allegedly is shrinking the polar ice caps -- as the culprit. The dead bears, they wrote, "suggest that drowning-related deaths of polar bears may increase in the future if the observed trend of regression of pack ice and/or longer open water periods continues."

 

Thanks in large measure to the work of Monnett and Gleason, the polar bear became the official mascot for climate-change alarmism. Images of a lone polar bear perched forlornly on a shrinking ice flow served as efficient propaganda for indoctrinating children; Al Gore used the "polar bears are drowning" meme in his global warming scare-umentary "An Inconvenient Truth."

 

And in 2008 the US government officially listed the polar bear as "threatened" under the Endangered Species Act.

 

Now Monnett has been put on "leave" due to "integrity" issues. Great.

And add to this story, the NASA data I also briefly mentioned, which has blown a hole in those reliable Warmer computer models about as wide as they told us the ozone hole was:

[NASA data] found -- shock! -- that the computer models vastly overestimated the greenhouse effect. Turns out that the Earth is far more capable of equalizing its own temperature than environmentalists would have us believe.

 

Spencer, a research scientist for the Earth System Science Center at the University of Alabama, explains "The satellite observations suggest there is much more energy lost to space during and after warming than the climate models show . . . There is a huge discrepancy between the data and the forecasts that is especially big over the oceans."

 

A huge discrepancy between the "data" and "forecasts." In other words, a huge discrepancy between global-warming theory and actual, observable reality.

Don't get me wrong, the Warmers are well entrenched in the scientific and academic community.  There are many livelihoods that depend upon the perpetuation of the scam, and many high placed reputations are at stake.  So don't expect the Warmers do disappear.  They will keep fighting the inevitable, and will become more militant, more aggressive, and more defensive, with every new bit of credibility destroying evidence that surfaces.  It would be fun to watch if it weren't such a racket.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 10 2011

During the show last week, I heard a news brief from AFA of Indiana that included the following information:

As reported in a May 2008 article in Your Church magazine, 55 percent of pastors can identify one or more topics on which they would not preach at all or only sparingly, because the sermon could negatively affect their hearers' willingness to attend church in the future. Among them are politics (38 percent), homosexuality (23 percent), abortion (18 percent), same-sex marriage (17 percent), war (17 percent), women's role in church and home (13 percent), the doctrine of election (13 percent), hell (7 percent) and money (3 percent).   

 

One of the three focuses of my upcoming book, 78: How Christians Can Save America, focuses on the desperate need we have to reform the church in America.  This information seems to demonstrate precisely why that is the case.

 

I invited AFA of Indiana's Executive Director, and friend of the show, Micah Clark, on to discuss this study and the perilous consequences that could come from such realities.

 

Hear the whole conversation here.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 09 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

If you've ever wanted a clear indication of just how out of touch the left wing is, it happened over the course of the last couple weeks.  The credit rating agencies were all telling the U.S. government: you are approaching a crisis and you must cut your spending by $4 trillion. 

 

But who was dragging their feet about cutting almost any spending?  We heard all about the "intransigent" Republicans who didn't want to increase taxes.  But what about the "intransigent" Democrats who absolutely refused to allow cuts to come to the giant entitlement programs that account for such a huge proportion of our spending? 

 

If you're looking to point fingers, look no further than the backwards folks who pretended like our spending problem wasn't a spending problem but a "taxes are too low" problem.

 

 

Nonetheless, there was the dynamic duo of Senator John Kerry and Obama brain David Axelrod explaining why we were downgraded:

Echoing Sen. John Kerry (D., Mass.) on Meet the Press, David Axelrod blamed the Tea Party for Standard & Poor's decision to downgrade the U.S.'s credit rating on Face the Nation.

 

"This is essentially a Tea Party downgrade," Axelrod said.

 

Later, Axelrod took aim at the GOP presidential field: "Not one of the Republican presidential candidates stood up in opposition to [the Tea Party]. Not one of them said, ?Let's compromise.'"

 

Host Bob Scheiffer interrupted Axelrod to remind him that former Utah governor Jon Huntsman (R.) had supported Rep. John Boehner's debt-ceiling plan. Undeterred, Axelrod continued on the war path.

Look, I understand that this is the birth of a talking point.  I get that this is political strategizing.  But this is outrageous.

 

The Tea Party, unlike the leadership of either political party in Washington, have been the ones who have been adamant about cutting the spending that led to this downgrade.  They have been the ones saying, "We know that we will have to see some of our services cut.  We know that we may take it on the chin in some ways.  We know we've gotten used to all these entitlements that we couldn't afford.  But we see the handwriting on the wall and we want to take our lumps now before it gets much worse for our kids and grandkids."

 

 

In short, they've been the only responsible ones in the political arena.  And now, these two pompous problem-perpetuators want to castigate the Tea Party about not being serious enough to prevent this downgrade?!  That's unconscionable and deranged.

 

Let's put this simply for David and John: if Tea Party cuts had been enacted by the Congress, this downgrade would not have happened.  Period.

 

Only the willfully ignorant would believe anyone who tells you that the only people touting the solution were the cause of the problem.  Why am I not surprised to see two leading Democrats banking on the ignorance of the masses for their political success?

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 09 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

I've always contended that liberals and those that disagree with me are some of my most ardent followers.  It's oddly flattering to be honest.  Last week, that proved to be true again, as a reader of my weekly column got all flustered with me for opposing the silly effort of American Atheists to stop the enshrinement of the 9/11 Cross at the official memorial site.  You can read my whole column here.

 

 

Nevertheless, Scott Hersberger thought he would enlighten us as to why the American Atheists were right in their case, and why it's just flabbergasting to him that anyone wouldn't understand that.  He wrote:

Is the displayed "cross" of structural beams intended to be a symbol of Christianity? Yes. That is the reason they put it on a pedestal and prayed over it.

 

Are federally funded sites allowed to give preference to one religion? No.

 

The decision in this case seems clear cut to me. It is surprising that anyone has to file a lawsuit in order to point out how the behavior of the memorial commission is unconstitutional and clearly unsympathetic toward those victims who do not happen to be Christians.

Let's just say for the sake of argument that the first statement was correct.  Let's say that this steel cross was in no way an item of historical significance, or sentimental attachment, or a general emblem of memorial to the fallen.  Let's say Hersberger is right that this is nothing but a brazen attempt to endorse the Christian faith.

 

Scott might be shocked to know that "constitutionally" speaking, that doesn't make his second statement true.  Now, according to recent case law from the U.S. Supreme Court, it's understandable that Hersberger would conclude that such an action would be in violation of our founding charter.  And it's that case law that the American Atheist group is counting on - as they always do - in their attempt to remove every vestige of our country's religious foundations from the public square.

 

But the presence of those vestiges should themselves speak volumes to Scott or the AA group about how agreeable that case law is with the Founders' intent in the Constitution.  I'd be interested to hear from Scott as to why George Washington gave thousand dollar government land grants to Indian tribes to build Christian churches, or why the Congress used tax dollars to import 20,000 Bibles to distribute to the states if such actions - clearly giving preference to one religion - violated the Constitution that they just wrote.

 

That was actually the reason that I included the words of the Senate committee from 1853, that conducted the most meaningful investigation of the Founders' intent with the First Amendment.  But Scott didn't want to deal with that.  He isn't interested in what the Founders intended with the Constitution.  No, he's more interested in what modern liberal courts think is appropriate.  It's why he blew off the significance of the committee's findings and wrote:

In his attempt to provide a logical argument for his stance, Heck cites a congressional investigation from 1853. Is Heck suggesting that no law or judicial opinion in 1853 has ever been improved by wiser successors?

Good grief, man.  I didn't suggest anything like that.  But if you are suggesting that's the case, perhaps you could express what "wiser successor" you're talking about?  The 1853 committee revealed the Founders' intent with the relationship between God and government.  If Hersberger has evidence that the committee was wrong, perhaps he could cite that for us?

 

But, of course, he does not.  What he has is the musings of modern liberal courts that, much like he does, blow off worrying about such inconsequential matters like the intent of the architects of our Republic.  That's how we end up with insane like lawsuits against candy canes, Nativity Scenes, and intersecting steel beams.

 

 

Needless to say, Scott Hersberger wasn't interested in debating the merits or the constitutionality of this case.  He was interested in cherry-picking my column to attack me for being insensitive.  To wit:

Since Heck does not seem to have much in the way of a valid argument,

Ah, ah, ah, Scott.  Just because you choose to ignore the argument, don't pretend it's not there.  My point was that constitutional and historical ignorance have led to the success of ludicrous lawsuits that do not pass constitutional muster.  Your support of one such lawsuit actually validates my argument.  So, thanks.

 he resorts to invectives such as "rabid",

Hey Scott, check out the docket of cases brought by American Atheists.  Then get back with me whether that's an unfair use of the word "rabid" to describe the nature of their attacks on the Christian faith.

"bizarrely obsessed", "wish to destroy our rights", "pursuing self-aggrandizement",

Let's put those words in context, shall we?  I wrote, "bizarrely obsessed with destroying the foundation of the very rights they ceaselessly exploit for the sake of self-aggrandizement."  A pretty well crafted sentence if I do say so myself!  The point was that this organization has an infatuation with assailing the very moral fiber that our Founders said provides for the permanence of our rights.  By undermining it, which they seem obsessed with doing, they are weakening the foundation of the very rights they use to bring their ill advised cases.  Yes, Scott, that seems bizarre.

"fanatical",

Again, check the docket.

"anti-God" (what does this mean?),

It means anything related to a deity, they attack.  Why was that so hard to figure out?

"extremists", "militant organization", "belligerent", "Hogwash", "irrational", "radical extremists determined to eradicate our nation's heritage".

They militantly and belligerently pursue an extreme agenda that includes the eradication of our nation's heritage.  Can you disagree with that, Scott?  I personally find their logic to be irrational hogwash, for reasons that I stated in the column.  I think Scott has an aversion towards adjectives.

Does Mr. Heck know any of these atheists? Do they actually exhibit these traits?

Actually, yes.  I hosted the former president of the group on my radio show, and she was without question the most hostile guest I have ever had on the program.  But that's irrelevant anyway.  My column focused on the organization, not the individuals.  In fact, I took time to distinguish between the organization and the vast majority of atheist individuals in the country. 

 

I'm guessing Scott was too busy counting adjectives to notice that, though.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  2 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 09 2011

With 18 countries boasting a stronger credit rating than the United States of America, there is perhaps no single issue that is on the minds of more politically oriented Americans than what impact this will have on our future economic health.

And even those Americans who aren't politically motivated, many are wondering what these "downgrade" rumblings they are hearing about will do to their personal finances.  Will this greatly affect our future, and if so, in what way?

On Tuesday's show, Peter hosted financial planner and Congressional candidate Don Bates, Jr. to talk about the downgrade and what it means.

Hear the full interview here.

Posted by: Anna Anderson AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 09 2011

In a nation that allows for as much unfettered and open thinking, we are bound to experience a few clashes of culture. It is inevitable.

 

What is not inevitable is for our elected leadership to fail to inspire, motivate, in a word. lead. Yet, inside the beltway, the very ones who campaigned on promises that they would lead America to new heights are falling far short of even beginning to deliver any of those promises.

 

In the world that is 180 degrees removed from Washington's fantasy-land, Americans get it. Americans know why businesses are not hiring. Americans know why the S&P downgraded America's credit rating. Americans know that, no matter how cute the jargon used, we cannot borrow and tax our way to prosperity.

 

 

Small Businesswoman to Obama: Apologize for Economy

 

Rick Santelli Rant: We'd be rated BBB without the Tea Party

 

Washington: Whining, Blaming, but NOT cutting spending

 

Last weekend, I posted links to a few of the public domain commentaries by market analysts I happen to follow. One Liberty Tree participant left me a note suggesting that my sources were not entirely objective given that they also market investing and trading services. Fine. I recognize the potential for certain conflicts or lack of objectivity. I even recognize that I might be inaccurately portrayed as promoting their services. That is why I try to be careful and openly note that I am neither recommending nor not recommending their subscription services. I also receive no remuneration of any kind from them. I am simply trying to make as many people as I can aware of the likely consequences of current economic trends and political decisions.

 

The analysts to whom I frequently refer, as well as many besides them, get it. They comprehend the dire financial and economic consequences of out of control spending, out of control regulation, and out of control tax policy.

 

I invited my critic to take a simple step, and I invite you, too: dig into the news archives of politicians' comments and advice in the 2007-2009 timeframe and compare them with the archives found at Money and Markets. Which source of comments and advice was more accurate and helpful?

 

Indeed, as today's events are unfolding, we don't even have to go back very far. Check out the comments and advice given within the past couple of years from both sources and compare them with current events. Which source of comments and advice are more accurate and helpful?

 

Americans get it.

 

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 02:03 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 08 2011

The American economy and markets are experiencing Obamanomics. Before proceeding, my years of experience tracking markets, albeit as a layman, tell me that today's 600+ point drop on the Dow Jones Industrial Average is not attributable to only Obamanomics. There are lots and lots of programmed trading and panic selling flooding the markets. At some point, analysts, traders, and investors will look back and recognize some overreaction. The markets will tell us when and where that point is.

 

The reality today is that the impact of dangerous economic and political policies are once again raising their ugly heads. It is inevitable. If an airliner takes off for a thousand mile flight and carries fuel for only 800 miles, it is either going to land or crash. If a government overloads its economy with unbridled spending and overwhelming debt, it is going to land or crash. Given the obstinacy of the financial pedophiles among us, the odds are in favor of the latter. We are witnessing a crash. We all hope it is not THE crash.

 

 

President Obama has no clue how to even begin dealing with this. In fact, as I wrote quite some time back, liberals bragged that Obama's economic illiteracy and lack of experience was a good thing, because it means that he's "just like everyone else." Yeah, that's working out well.

 

Did America's fiscal disaster begin with Barack Hussein Obama? Certainly not. I'm not certain how far back we can go, but we can certainly go back a long way. Fiscal conservatives absolutely opposed the Bush-initiated bailouts. The former president has explained his rationale in his book and on the publicity circuit. He was in a no-win situation. Without bailouts, the immediate credit meltdown would have been worse at that time. With the bailouts, though, the stage was set for an even worse meltdown when the real economy could no longer sustain Washington's fake economy. So it's all Bush's fault, right?

 

Well, not so quick. As a Senator, Obama voted for government intervention.

The fact that we have reached a point where the Federal Reserve felt it had to take this unprecedented step with the American Insurance Group is the final verdict on the failed economic philosophy of the last eight years," Obama said. "While we do not know all the details of this arrangement, the Fed must ensure that the plan protects the families that count on insurance. It should bolster our economy's ability to create good-paying jobs and help working Americans pay their bills and save their money. It must not bail out the shareholders or management of AIG.

No matter which speech one listens to, Obama wanted then, and wants now, financial irresponsibility to be shuffled onto the backs of American taxpayers. He wants to increase government spending that already requires 41 cents to be borrowed for every dollar spent.

 

During his administration, deficit spending has exploded into the trillions of dollars! He saddles our economy with more and more burdensome regulations and policies. Obamacare alone is nearly 2,000 pages long. Instead of working to solve problems, Obama blames. Try a web search with the keywords "Obama blames." Among those I got a kick out of with just a quick overview: Obama blames oil companies for not drilling; Obama blames motorists for higher gasoline prices; Obama blames technological advances for high unemployment.

 

This is the Obama administration, and these are his economic policies. After all, he announced clearly during his campaign that he would bankrupt the coal industry. He unapologetically acknowledged that under his plan, energy rates would "skyrocket."

 

These are pieces of the ideology that have gone into Obamanomics. Does he, or anyone else, believe that there will be no economic fallout from the consequent anti-business environment?

 

Just as the former president was in an unenviable position, so is this one. There is no - not one - solution that will be painless. But Mr. Obama has been painting us into this corner for a long time. He is culpable in many ways, not the least as a supporter of easing mortgage lending criteria so that unqualified applicants could obtain mortgages that drowned them in red ink.

 

Pushing the down button... that's Obamanomics at work.

 

Give me Reaganomics any day.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 07:44 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 08 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

I don't really even know how to put into words the response I have to the president's news conference today about the credit downgrade of the United States.  First of all, some obvious observations: this president once again emerged for his comments nearly an hour after he announced that he would be speaking.  That is rude and unprofessional, and an indication of an executive who has little regard for those he is "leading."

 

Secondly, waiting until now to issue any formal remarks about the devastating events of the past weekend, is unacceptable.  I know the president was pretty enthralled with his own fundraising and birthday celebrations, but the image of Obama fiddling while the country burned could not have been far from any rational American's mind.

 

 

Third, it was tacky to lump in the remarks about our debt and fiscal situation with the tragedy of the death of the Navy SEALs.  Call it a personal opinion, but given that there was plenty of time to make separate remarks, that's the way it should have been handled.

 

But amazingly, the actual substance of the press conference was even worse than all those immediate gut reactions.  It has become crystal clear to anyone with the courage to admit it: this Obama guy has no clue what he's doing.

 

I'd love to candy coat it, but there's no sense in doing so.  And actually, there's much to lose in doing so.  We need the country to come to the stark realization that their chief executive is not up to the job.  I watched Chris Matthews' reaction on MSNBC after Obama finished, and I got the impression that though he may not say it directly, he knows it.  He knows he was snowed, and that he participated in the snowing of many of his fellow countrymen when it came to Obama's abilities and qualifications for this office.

 

Obama has provided precisely no leadership through our fiscal situations.  He has issued statements, sent out his underlings to make jabs at the political opposition, and has held brief (no questions allowed) press conferences to try to generate a political support bounce for his poll numbers, but he has offered no concrete plans, no substance, no ideas, and nothing beyond generic talking points masking itself as leadership.  Case in point:

"It's not a lack of plans or policies that is a problem here, it's a lack of political will in Washington. It is the insistence of drawing lines in the sand. A refusal to put what's best for the country ahead of self-interest or party or ideology. And that's what we need to change. I realize after what we just went through there is some skepticism in that."

Stop and think about that.  S&P told us, told everyone, if we didn't want to be downgraded, we needed to come up with a long term plan for debt reduction.  Yet because he has been unable to come up with any long term plan for such deficit or debt reduction, he wants us to believe our problem isn't a lack of a plan.  No, the problem is, in Obama's warped world, that the TEA Party has resisted his plans to decimate the American economy through out of control spending.

 

Since the TEA Party drew a line in the sand and said that they were going to resist continued borrowing and spending (something Obama requested a blank check from Congress to do long before he even began talking about his "grand bargain" nonsense), they are the problem.  Never mind the fact that S&P readily acknowledged that had the TEA Party plan been enacted (notice that the TEA Party leaders actually produced a plan...something Democrats and Obama have been unable to do), the downgrade would not have happened. 

 

Yet Obama's response characterizes the limitations of his ideologically bound mind.  He has nothing to offer beyond more taxes, more spending.  That will solve our job problem.  That will solve our debt problem.  That will solve all our problems.  If only.

 

The entire presidency of Barack Obama has been an unmitigated economic disaster for the United States, and if his Party continues to back him and support him for the next year and a half, it's only going to get worse.  His press conference today demonstrated in living color that he is not up to the job.  He doesn't know what he's doing.  He is totally out of his league, and is being totally overwhelmed by this job he wasn't prepared to take on.  Our country can't afford another 4 years of his failures.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 08 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

While Cokie Roberts is complaining about our Constitution being the problem, Mitt Romney saying it's Obama's fault, and David Axelrod and John Kerry blaming the Tea Party (although that last one is about as dumb as you could possibly imagine, when you stop to consider the whole purpose of the Tea Party), the most important thing is that Americans understand what the downgrade means, why it happened, and how we can recover.  And it's not difficult.

 

First, who are these "downgraders?"  Political supporters of Mr. Obama are obviously very worried about how this black eye will affect his presidential re-election, so they are quick to bad mouth S&P and say how this was all "politically motivated."  If we had time to dwell on such things, it would be an interesting exercise to consider what those same voices would be saying if John McCain were sitting in the White House while this occurred.  But we don't have time for that.

 


In a nutshell, these ratings agencies were created after the Great Depression to be watchdogs over various investment risks, so that people could know what was a safe bet and what was overly risky.  The agencies rate the bonds of various countries around the world, as well as other entities, cities, companies, etc.  The U.S. bond rating has always been the most trustworthy, with a AAA rating since the beginning of the ratings.

 

So what happened?  A simple explanation from Jay Haug:

The rating agencies, Moody's, Fitch and others have been under fire for their falling down on the debt crisis in 2007-8. They appeared to be in bed with the banks and did not give the appropriate downgrades in time to let investors large and small know what was coming. In their defense, many of the bank financials were not transparent and were filled with "off balance sheet" investments. But because US government financials are generally more accessible than private companies were in 2007-8, I believe what we are hearing is more trustworthy. It is interesting that the Obama administration tried to question S & P's assessment, telling them they were off by $2 trillion. It is hard to spin financial reality. S & P responded to them and to Congress this way. "You needed to cut $4 trillion and you only cut $2 trillion...not enough. Thus the downgrade. 

Haug goes on to make the best point I've heard yet in all the talking heads jibber-jabber about this situation:

It is a good thing that S & P did what they did because it takes the debt fight out of the political realm and makes it purely financial. It is like a teenager who is late on his car insurance bill who comes home with all kinds of excuses about why he hasn't paid it. His father responds, "I don't care why. If you don't pay this, you can't drive anymore." S & P said to the federal government, "It's up to you to fix this and what you did last week didn't fix it."

In other words, the time has come for Washington to be purged of the perpetually dishonest politicians who have been feeding us the line that we can keep spending and spending and borrowing and borrowing, and nothing bad will happen.  We must get serious about our spending problem.  We must make drastic cuts.  Now.

 

That means taking on Medicare and Social Security.  It means dealing with the entitlement noose that has been tightening around our necks while self-serving politicians have been telling us those programs are rock-solid.

 

Honestly, this downgrade could be as productive for us as a tough loss during the season for the inappropriately cocky and overly confident favored team.  It can shock us into realizing we need to fix our problems, not ignore them.  If we do that, this can be a relatively short and not overly serious issue:

The bad news is that all interest rates from home mortgages to car loans will rise slightly. Canada lost their AAA rating in 1994 but they cut spending and got it back in 1997. It will probably take us longer. What this mandates now is action. The time for talk is over.

If we don't act.  If we keep talking.  If we suffer the idiocy that says this downgrade was the fault of the very people in the country saying we have to make spending cuts, then this problem will become a crisis.  Of epic proportions.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 08 2011

We've spent a great deal of time on the show discussing the subversive organization GLSEN (Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network) and its efforts to infiltrate public schools under the guise of stopping "bullying."  Once there, GLSEN unleashes a barrage of pro-homosexual propaganda efforts to create "allies" for the legislative and cultural agenda of sexual anarchists, and create enemies of those with traditional morality.

 

 

Linda Harvey of Mission America has been courageously writing and warning about GLSEN's activities for some time now.  She has amassed a large network of followers to her radio program and pro-family newsletter, and has done a great deal to expose GLSEN and its hostile agenda.

 

On Monday's show, I invited Linda onto the program to provide a fresh perspective on the threat that GLSEN poses and why any school corporation that values the safety and well-being of its children won't let this radical group anywhere close to the front door.

 

Hear the revealing interview here.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 08 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

As expected, the left wing and their allies in the mainstream media have ranged from casting a skeptical eye to vitriolic anger at Texas Governor Rick Perry being involved in a large scale prayer and fasting event at Reliant Stadium over the weekend.

 

Just what got their bowels in an uproar, you ask?  Check out this startling, shocking, and unimaginable report:

Standing on a stage surrounded by thousands of fellow Christians on Saturday morning, Gov. Rick Perry of Texas called on Jesus to bless and guide the nation's military and political leaders and "those who cannot see the light in the midst of all the darkness."

 

 

"Lord, you are the source of every good thing," Mr. Perry said, as he bowed his head, closed his eyes and leaned into a microphone at Reliant Stadium here. "You are our only hope, and we stand before you today in awe of your power and in gratitude for your blessings, and humility for our sins. Father, our heart breaks for America. We see discord at home. We see fear in the marketplace. We see anger in the halls of government, and as a nation we have forgotten who made us, who protects us, who blesses us, and for that we cry out for your forgiveness."

Oh my goodness.  I don't even know what to make of that.  An American political figure having the audacity to make such an overt appeal to the God of Christianity for Divine protection and forgiveness for our national sins?  I mean, who does this guy think he is, anyway?  George Washington?!

 

That, of course, is the most frightening part of the story.  Not that Governor Perry expressed his personal faith, even in his public character as a Governor.  It's that such an action, so often and so readily done by the forefathers of the nation, has come to be seen as improper, or at least "questionable," as the New York Times seemed to regard it:

While the event will be sure to help Mr. Perry if he tries to establish himself as the religious right's favored candidate, it also opens him up to criticism for mixing religion and politics in such a grand and overtly Christian fashion.

Call me crazy, but I don't think that Mr. Perry was unaware that this action would "open him up to criticism" by the clueless folks on the left.  And, as always seems to be the case, Mr. Perry is even taking criticism from the right for this.  No one savages their own quite like the right.  (Don't get me wrong, I think the religious, doctrinal objections some strong Christian leaders like Brannon Howse have illuminated are accurate and important...but the reality remains that Governor Perry is not a minister and is not proclaiming doctrine from his position as Governor...his action is quite reminiscent of the actions of our Founders and early presidents who included a wide variety of faiths and sects in these public proclamations of faith).

 

Perry is seemingly undeterred by the left's aggressive propagation of the isolation of church and state.  He is comfortable with his faith.  He is aware that America needs more than political leadership at this time of crisis.  And that makes him an even more attractive option for conservative voters.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Sunday, August 07 2011

For the first time in history, a credit rating agency downgraded America's credit rating. On Friday evening, Standard & Poor's bumped America's rating down from AAA to AA+. What would be the media response if this had happened during the previous administration? Think we would be seeing anything but doomsday mega-headlines? So what are we getting now?

 

I watched a major network evening news program on Saturday. The headlines announced at the beginning of the program mentioned nothing about the credit rating downgrade. In my Sunday morning paper, the Associated Press article begins:

The real danger from the downgrade of U.S. government debt by Standard & Poor's isn't higher interest rates. It's the hit to the nation's fragile economic psyche and rattled financial markets. S&P's decision to strip the U.S. of its sterling AAA credit rating for the first time and move it down one notch to AA+, deals a blow to the confidence of consumers and businesses at a dangerous time, economists say.

Most of the concerns are directed toward the agency that made the downgrade, not the reasons why the downgrade was made. In fact, articles have already been slanted so that the responsibility for any negative consequences will fall on S&P instead of this fiscally irresponsible government.

 

The amount of denial out there is nothing short of amazing, and the silence is deafening.
Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 03:45 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, August 07 2011

A whole range of citizens from liberals to libertarians are recommending that drugs be legalized.

 

A snippet of the argument in favor of this movement from "Law Enforcement Against Prohibition:"

We believe that drug prohibition is the true cause of much of the social and personal damage that has historically been attributed to drug use. It is prohibition that makes marijuana worth more than gold, and heroin worth more than uranium - while giving criminals a monopoly over their supply.... Prohibition costs taxpayers tens of billions of dollars every year, yet 40 years and some 40 million arrests later, drugs are cheaper, more potent and far more widely used than at the beginning of this futile crusade.

 

We believe that by eliminating prohibition of all drugs for adults and establishing appropriate regulation and standards for distribution and use, law enforcement could focus more on crimes of violence, such as rape, aggravated assault, child abuse and murder, making our communities much safer. We believe that sending parents to prison for non-violent personal drug use destroys families. We believe that in a regulated and controlled environment, drugs will be safer for adult use and less accessible to our children. And we believe that by placing drug abuse in the hands of medical professionals instead of the criminal justice system, we will reduce rates of addiction and overdose deaths.

 

An argument favoring the legal restriction of addictive drugs:

A London drug fixer claims he helped Amy Winehouse buy £1,200 of crack cocaine and heroin the night before she died.

Drug abuse kills people, so it only makes sense to make it more available by legalization. Is this the best kind of critical thinking available to us today?
Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 02:33 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Sunday, August 07 2011

Anyone recall the 2008 presidential campaign? The one in which we learned that if only "the right man were in office," the whole world would love America? When we were told that America really had no enemies, just the neo-cons in the White House?

 

 

So Barrack Hussein Obama was elected. And the world became <sound of needle being drug over the record>.

1. Anonymous hacking group claims it has breached 70 law enforcement websites across the U.S.

 

2. Insurgents shot down a U.S. military helicopter during fighting in eastern Afghanistan, killing 30 Americans, most of them belonging to the same elite unit as the Navy SEALs who killed Al Qaeda leader Usama bin Laden, U.S. officials said Saturday. It was the deadliest single loss for American forces in the decade-old war against the Taliban.

Can't we all feel the love?

 

Of course, conservatives knew all along what reality would be. (But don't tell the libs; it'll ruin their day).

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 08:21 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, August 07 2011

Anyone remember the stories of Nero fiddling whil Rome burned?

 

Well, let's take a look at what the president of the United States of America was doing while the American economy tanked this week.

President Obama celebrated his 50th birthday Thursday night with a celebrity-filled bash, as entertainer Chris Rock reported on his Twitter feed: "Just left the Presidents birthday party at the White House. Herbie Hancock played, Stevie Wonder sang and yes they did the electric slide. A great night." .Obama's party ? paid for, the White House said, by the first couple ? was closed to press and not on his official schedule. Obama's team was not eager for pictures of the bash, coming as the stock market was plunging and the new jobless report was being released Friday morning.

 

Maybe some will think it unfair to pick on Mr. Obama for enjoying a birthday party... his 50th, no less. Shouldn't anyone get to enjoy a birthday bash if they want?

 

Well, yes, but Mr. Obama is not "anyone." He is the President of the United States of America, and the good ol' USofA is in a world of hurts. Sure, have a little party, blow out the candles on the cake, maybe sneak out for one of those burgers, but then demonstrate some leadership. Stop and recognize that this current spend, spend, spend activity is literally killing our prosperity. In fact, I heard a Rush caller coin the phrase "financial pedophiles," referring to those wanting massive spending that will saddle children, grandchildren, and beyond with massive debt.

 

Happy Birthday, Mr. President, but the American economy is going down in flames. Quite fiddling.

 

Live and learn. learn and live.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 07:46 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, August 07 2011

"And I saw something else under the sun: In the place of judgment - wickedness was there, in the place of justice - wickedness was there. I thought in my heart, ?God will bring to judgment both the righteous and the wicked, for there will be a time for every activity, a time for every deed.'" - Ecclesiastes 3:16-17

This week has been an economic mess, with stock markets around the world losing value rapidly and S&P downgrading America's credit rating for the first time in history. Events like these are significant because they cause a lot of uncertainty and panic.

 

At the same time, they can open our minds and our hearts to reality. First, Christian men and women are driven closer to the only source of peace. Second, men and women seeking peace are open to learning the lessons God teaches. Third, we learn that we can correct mistakes and not repeat them.

 

 

No one reading this devotional knows of a time without central banks. A modern economy cannot function without them, we have always been told. Let us hear a different lesson from our own heritage.

 

In July 1832, President Andrew Jackson vetoed the Bank Renewal Bill which prevented the rechartering of the Bank of the United States. President Jackson believed that the bank was unauthorized by the Constitution and concentrated too much economic power in the hands of a small moneyed elite.

 

Explaining his action, President Jackson declared,

In the full enjoyment of the gifts of Heaven and the fruits of superior industry, economy, and virtue, every man is equally entitled to protection by law; but when the laws undertake to add to these natural and just advantages artificial distinctions, to grant titles, gratuities, and exclusive privileges, to make the rich richer and the potent more powerful, the humble members of society - the farmers, mechanics, and laborers - .have a right to complain of the injustice of their Government.

 

There are no necessary evils in government. Its evils exist only in its abuses. If it would confine itself to equal protection, and, as Heaven does its rains, shower its favors alike on the high and the low, the rich and the poor, it would be an unqualified blessing. In the act before me there seems to be a wide and unnecessary departure from these just principles.

 

For relief and deliverance let us firmly rely on that kind Providence which I am sure watches with peculiar care over the destinies of our Republic, and on the intelligence and wisdom of our countrymen. Through His abundant goodness and their patriotic devotion our liberty and Union will be preserved.

Father, let us recognize Your hand in these events swirling about us these days. May those who know You and call You Lord become even closer to You in these days of uncertainty. Like Israel of old, do not abandon us even in days of correction. May those who seek You learn that You have already met, loved, and saved them when they call out to You. May we find the courage to repent of our sin against You and, like President Jackson and many others, reject the temptation to create by man a government in which the powerful seeks a place in our lives reserved only for You. Grant to us Your courage in these days of turmoil so that we can lead others into Your guiding light. In the name of Christ our Lord we pray. Amen.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 07:24 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, August 07 2011

This is an increasingly heard, short-sighted cliché from those who want us to retreat from the cultural problems impacting our society and our future, or those who want to radically redefine marriage. Do you know the fatal flaws of this argument?

What about the claim that marriage is simply a religious institution best left to churches?   Respected marriage expert and author Glenn Stanton has an informative article you should read so you can know how to respond to these comments at this link:

http://www.bpnews.net/BPFirstPerson.asp?ID=35831

Posted by: Micah Clark AT 06:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 06 2011

I just pressed the button to send my article about Vladimir Putin's comments about America's fiscal irresponsibility when my inbox came alive with breaking, astounding, and disturbing news.

Standard & Poor's Friday night downgraded the U.S. debt rating to AA+ from AAA and, while removing the world's largest economy from CreditWatch, said the outlook was negative. "The downgrade reflects our opinion that the fiscal consolidation plan that Congress and the Administration recently agreed to falls short of what, in our view, would be necessary to stabilize the government's medium-term debt dynamics," S&P said. "More broadly, the downgrade reflects our view that the effectiveness, stability, and predictability of American policymaking and political institutions have weakened at a time of ongoing fiscal and economic challenges to a degree more than we envisioned when we assigned a negative outlook to the rating on April 18, 2011."

In April of this year, Fox Business News, along with others, reported:

In an interview with the FOX Business Network Tuesday morning, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said there is no risk the United States will lose its ?AAA' credit rating. On Monday, Standard & Poor's lowered its outlook on the US, suggesting a downgrade of the country's credit rating could come in the next couple of years.

 

Catch that? "No risk." While every reasonable economist, analyst, and common American recognized the significance of America's problems, the Treasury Secretary looked the American people in the eye and said, "No risk." I did not have to search for the Secretary's remarks, either, because when I received this e-mail, I saved it knowing what would most likely happen.

 

Mind you, Mr. Geithner is not the only government bureaucrat or politician attempting to sprinkle fairy dust on this economy. Go back to 2007-2008. The "housing bubble" was small and contained in a few select markets. The defaults would be few and the impact minimal to the economy. We experienced a global recession as a result of bad loans, failed policies, and outright fraud blowing up in everyone's faces.

 

You know the rest of the story: massive bailouts to institutions given a free ride with taxpayer money, a new administration that criticized the spending of their predecessor and then rushing to increase the rate of federal spending at a pace never before experienced in America, and a Federal Reserve that is purposely doing what it can to devalue the American dollar in order to make repayment of our massive debt with cheaper dollars which our creditors dislike.

 

As a result of lethargy on the part of responsible Americans, and as a result of liberal spending policies imposed on us, our way of life is changing before our eyes. You can believe who you want, but recent events have shown me that the least trustworthy recommendations are coming from inside the beltway and other regions in the land of left-believe.

 

Live and learn. learn and live.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 09:40 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 06 2011

America is now getting spanked by the Russians:

"The [United States] is living in debt. It is not living within its means, shifting the weight of responsibility on other countries and in a way acting as a parasite," Putin told a group of pro-Kremlin youth in central Russia.

While I have a deep distrust of Putin's motives and goals, I sadly acknowledge that the reality is that he is right. We are living in debt. We are living beyond our means.

 

 

Fact: For every dollar that our government spends on anything, it must borrow 41 cents.

 

Fact: Non-U.S. nations' hold at least 4.5 trillion dollars of our Treasury securities. China and Japan hold at least 2 trillion dollars of the total amount. That is staggering!

 

Fact: A multitude of nations are beginning to consider replacing the dollar as the world's reserve currency.

 

Fact: Central Banks the world over are buying gold and other commodities.

 

Question: When our creditor nations decide that U.S. Treasuries are not worth the risk, who will underwrite our deficit spending then?

 

This is not shaping up to be a pretty picture at all. Want a look at potential spine-chilling scenarios?

 

Try the collapse of the Soviet economy in the 1990s. Brazil's collapse and hyperinflation in the 1990s. Greece today, followed by Ireland, Italy, and Spain.

 

No matter how noble the intentions, we must stop living beyond our national means. Period. Failure to do so will create suffering on a scale not seen in America since the Civil War. and even then it could exceed that.

 

Or we may not survive as the nation we know, love, and recognize. We have a lot of enemies with capabilities to cross defenseless borders.

 

Here are some recent comments by analysts far more knowledgeable on this than I am. As usual, please note that I am neither encouraging nor discouraging the use of any services; I am seeking to get some observations into your hands.

 

Recession strikes! Markets tank!

 

Drastic Measures Needed NOW

 

About those "guaranteed" retirement benefits

 

Day of Reckoning! TOMORROW!

 

Sovereign Debt Crisis Queuing Up Round Two of the Global Financial Crisis

 

As Americans, we need to allow reality to sink in, and we need to share it with others we care about. If our government remains in the grip of those who insist that our rate of spending never slows down, we will experience national and personal deprivation to some degree. Now is the time to make plans, large or small, with family, friends, neighbors, brothers and sisters in Christ, whoever works in your world of friendship and trust.

 

I'm not predicting the "end of the world," but I do take seriously the analysis of those looking into these events. Through experience, if nothing else, Vladimir Putin knows what he is talking about.

 

Live and learn... learn and live.

Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 09:34 am   |  Permalink   |  2 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 06 2011

Speaking about similarities and differences between the attack in Norway by Anders Breivik and attacks on Israel by terrorist organization Hamas, Norwegian Ambassador to Israel Svein Sevje remarked:

"We Norwegians consider the occupation to be the cause of the terror against Israel. Those who believe this will not change their mind because of the attack in Oslo."

 

Actually, the universe of lib-quotes for the week overwhelmed my radar screen. too many targets. The source of most of them is from America's debt-ceiling debates where conservatives opposing tax increases are being called "terrorists" by our peaceful, loveable, huggable folks on the left.

 

I ended up with Ambassador Sevje's remarks because this actually typifies liberal ideology. In spite of their portrayal of themselves and peaceful, just, and compassionate, they always give themselves away as anything but those attributes. They are as hate-filled - sin-filled - as any other of God's human creations and in need of accepting the love of God fulfilled in Christ. Liberals, in general though, reject the love of God and the reality of human sin.

 

Instead, as the logical consequence of their ideology takes us and repeatedly shows itself, liberals do not mind declaring who their self-made enemies are and describing what they would like done to them.

 

Only those duped by the most heinous propaganda the left - along with those they allow to manipulate them - conjure up against Israel are convinced that Israelis occupy Palestinian territory.

 

Here, by the way, were Israel's responses to the attacks in Norway:

The Israeli government has done what it should do. President Shimon Peres, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other cabinet members have expressed Israel's condolences to Norway. The Israeli Embassy in Oslo, in what is considered an unusual act concerning an event in the host country, lowered its flag to half mast to express its horror at the tragedy that has befallen Norway.

Here, in part, is the condolence from Hamas:

These attacks show the dangers of extremist tendencies which promote and incite hatred against Islam, this time at youth camps in expressing its solidarity with the Palestinian people under occupation and the lifting of the siege. This confirms that the crime of incitement campaign of Zionism and the unjust American and ongoing siege against the Palestinian people, and against people with him from the free world must stop immediately and they provide cover for the Zionist extremism, and paid about such attack.

Sadly, not only do liberals espouse ideology that will eventually kill them, but they are bent on dragging everyone else along with them.
Posted by: TheOldSalt AT 07:09 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 06 2011

Last week AFA of Indiana had the opportunity to co-host a lunch in Fort Wayne with nearly fifty religious and educational leaders to discuss the new K-12 Indiana School Scholarship program. Included were three area legislators (Rep. Morris, Sen. Yoder and Sen. Banks) who were a part of passage of this new school voucher law. We discussed various aspects of the new law for these ministry heads and private school administrators.

One of the most powerful moments of the lunch was when a local mother and daughter had the chance to speak about their excitement of having been approved for a voucher to attend a local Christian school, which would not have been possible without HB 1003. They firmly believe that this option will change their lives and future.

I understand that there are differing opinions among readers. Some public school teachers have certain concerns and others reading this have concerns about private school freedoms. Yet, setting aside those concerns temporarily, may I suggest a positive view as a possibility?

Shortly after WW2, General Douglas MacArthur, commander of occupied Japan, sent out an urgent call to America begging for 1,000 Christian missionaries. MacArthur realized that with the required public announcement from Japan's Emperor Hirohito stating that he was not divine, the faith of the Japanese had been deeply shaken. MacArthur believed that there was a unique window of opportunity to convert millions of Japanese to the Christian faith which would have an enormously positive spiritual impact upon the war torn nation and help relations between the US and Japan.

Unfortunately, America's churches were not ready. By the time US Christians could fulfill the call for missionaries to Japan, it was too late. Today, only 1% of Japan's adult population is Christian.

Is this a MacArthur moment for Hoosier private schools?    Indiana has 352 private schools, most of which are religious Christian schools. As of late July, only 125 had applied with the Indiana Department of Education to receive vouchers. Most of the schools participating are Catholic schools that have always been interested in vouchers and school choice. It seems as though many Christian schools are choosing to sit on the sidelines. Could vouchers be a unique opportunity, in addition to a good education, to evangelize thousands of Hoosier children with the Gospel and to instill a lifelong Judeo-Christian worldview? Could this be a window of opportunity to dramatically impact thousands of Hoosier children and to impact the culture of our state in a positive manner?  Regardless of how you may have viewed HB 1003, we can all pray that this is the long-term cultural and eternal outcome of this new statewide educational scholarship program.

To see a List of participating schools you can click on this link:

http://www.doe.in.gov/schoolchoice/docs/2011-07-26-ApprovedChoiceSchools.pdf

For more information about the school voucher program, visit these web sites:

www.doe.in.gov/schoolchoice

http://www.MyChoiceIned.com

Posted by: Micah Clark AT 06:31 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, August 06 2011

An Associated Press story on Monday reported that the state would be giving money to Indiana's largest abortion provider again, through another avenue. For some observers this was news. Others may have assumed that following Judge Tanya Walton Pratt's June 24th injunction setting aside a new state law against such a use of tax dollars, that our taxes were already back in the hands of Planned Parenthood.

It may be newsworthy that the state chose to release a grant Planned Parenthood through the Indiana Housing Community and Development Authority. Most people understand that following Judge Pratt's injunction, all Medicaid reimbursements would continue to go to the abortion provider, as those funds were the center of Planned Parenthood's legal complaint. Yet, was it absolutely necessary to give a discretionary grant of $6,000 from a neighborhood assistance program to Planned Parenthood? Could this Housing agency have waited until this issue is settled in court? Were there other grant applicants who might more directly deal with housing related issues that could have used this money? Those answers seem less clear. Planned Parenthood of Indiana's director says they will use the grant as leverage to raise $12,000.

We may not know the answers to these questions without knowing how the agency was advised to act in light of the Judge's order. What is clear is that Attorney General Greg Zoeller's office is defending the law passed by two-thirds of the House and Senate on bi-partisan votes seeking to protect the conscience of taxpayers who do not want their money to subsidize the abortion industry. Monday afternoon the Attorney General filed an official appeal to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago.

The Attorney General is arguing several different points in his motion in defense of House Bill 1210. One he chose to mention in his press release is that the ruling should be reversed because state has the right to argue this in another venue already set up specifically for Medicaid disputes with the Federal government called the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.  Indiana has a hearing on this issue before that panel on September 13th.

Posted by: Micah Clark AT 06:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 05 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

On Wednesday, MSNBC's host Martin Bashir hosted Dr. Stanton Peele to discuss the "mind of the Tea Party."  Dr. Peele made some truly insightful, if not controversial, remarks about the movement of freedom-loving fiscal discipline hawks.  His comments caught the attention of several conservative commentators like Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck who took him to task.  Being so much more open minded than either of those two, I decided to invite Dr. Peele onto my show and pick his addiction-minded brain a little further about a different political group.  Here was our enlightening "exchange":

PETER HECK, HOST: We are honored to be joined now by Dr. Stanton Peele, a psychologist, addiction specialist - in fact from what I understand is currently under the influence of several addictions right now himself.  He knows what-of he speaks.  Doesn't just talk about his work...he lives it.

 

He's the author of the book "Seven Tools to Beat Addiction" which I believe include Tack Hammer, Sledge Hammer, Pipe wrench, Universal Joint Puller, and a few others.  Just smack it right out of people.

 

Anyway, I'm sorry I don't mean to make light of the very serious work that Dr. Peele does, and the obvious seriousness with which all Americans should take his political analysis.  Dr. Peele, thanks very much for joining us here on the Peter Heck Show.  Good afternoon.

 

 

STANTON PEELE, PSYCHOLOGIST: Good afternoon, Martin

 

 

HECK: It's Peter, but that's no biggie.  Probably just your addiction, right?  (pause) Ahem, anyway, I know you are a very busy man and I promised your staff that we wouldn't take up too much of your time because I know you are highly sought after right now for interviews after your shocking performance on MSNBC the other day calling out the Tea Party.  The truth is, sir, that I don't want to spend even an ounce of your time talking about the Tea Party.  I'm not interested in that or in them.  What I want to talk to you about, as an addiction specialist, is the humanist, socialist left in this country.  I want to get your take on the Obama movement at large...the neo-Marxists. 

 

It seems like every couple decades our country has to go through this resurgence of the left.  They prove themselves to be utter failures, say like the Carter years, but it isn't 20 or 30 years later before here comes another liberal like Obama touting the same failed policies, promising that if we just take a little bit more from people and make government a little bit bigger, central planning bureaucrats can come up with programs and regulations, and can manipulate us all into happiness, into a utopian dream world where we sing with the voices of the mountain and paint with the colors of the wind.  And they believe it's the government that can do all that.  No matter how many times it's proven to be a failure, they keep coming back to it.  As an addiction specialist, how do you characterize that?

 

 

PEELE: Well, the way I think about it is they are pursuing goals that can't be achieved. It's sort of like a child who has some kind of fantasy, and they keep asking you to give them things to acquire that, but it's impossible to arrive at the goal that they want. The idyllic paths that they are pursuing probably never existed and certainly not something that we can reach right now.

 

 

HECK: Well yeah, I mean that's just it.  There's never been a utopia.  This is a fallen world.  In fact, every time we shrink the individual and grow the state, we don't see a recipe for happiness, we see a recipe for misery.  Marx, Lenin, Stalin, Castro, Mao, all of them...not exactly paradises. 

 

But yet, history, historical fact doesn't seem to deter them.  Even our own past.  You can point to Henry Morgenthau, FDR's Treasury Secretary who said after all the New Deal spending, "we're in just as big of an economic mess now as we were when we started this unprecedented spending."  We can point to the same thing with LBJ, with Carter...and yet it doesn't matter.  Here comes Barack Obama and what are they saying?

 

Oh, just let us tax a little more, let us spend this money, let's increase our debt just a couple more trillion dollars and we'll be able to send another surge of money into the economy, we'll be able to place this money right where it needs to go to make the economy take off and it will be miraculous!  No one will want for anything!  We can all ride the backs of the rich and the big business tycoons and everyone will prosper...just take more from some and let us redistribute to others.  What do you think when you see that argument...against all the evidence that we've accumulated for years?

 

 

PEELE: They are adamant about achieving something that's unachievable, which reminds us of a couple of things. It reminds us of delusion and psychosis. It reminds us of addiction because addicts are seeking something that they can't have. They want a state of happiness or nirvana that can't be achieved except through an artificial substance.

 

 

HECK: Wow, those are strong words.  Psychosis, and delusion.  But I get it.  I get what you're saying.  When you have tried spending other people's money, money that belongs to them and not to you, but you confiscate it arbitrarily or through confiscatory taxation and then you redistribute it, and it doesn't work...but yet you keep trying it, you're either deluded or you're psychotic.

 

Let me ask you though.  We've seen the way this leftist power-hungry, all powerful state thing has worked out other places.  The repression of dissent, the silencing of speech, the Gulags, the re-education camps.  Do you think that the left's obsession with taking over people's lives, taking over their money, their education, their energy use, their college loans, their car emissions, their healthcare, their lightbulbs for crying out loud...let's say people resist this continued hostile takeover of their lives...do you think these leftist power-hungry statists could turn violent like we've seen in so many other places when the people resist them?

 

 

PEELE: And it reminds us also of the Norway situation, because when people are thwarted, when a child is thwarted in attaining something that can't be had, they often strike out, and I think Norway is one example of one kind of reaction to that kind of a frustration.

 

 

HECK: Geez.  Scary.  So as an addiction specialist, understanding how addicted the left is to spending other people's money and controlling - or attempting to control - other people's lives...where does it go from here?  Obamanomics has failed miserably.  We all see that.  Everyone knows that. 

 

The "Summer of Recovery" that they bragged about has turned into Obama's "Mission Accomplished" moment.  Yesterday, the Dow plunges 500 points, jobless claims and unemployment are at all time highs.  All these leftist economists kept saying, "Oh let's spend more money" meaning let's spend more of the taxpayer's money instead of giving it back to them.  And it hasn't worked.  Yet that seems to be all the left has to offer.  It's all they're saying still.  We hear Harry Reid and Barack Obama saying that this new Super Congress committee will be pushing through recommendations for tax increases.  Obama has promised that he is going to jack up taxes on job creators.  After all their failure they want to double down on it. 

 

How long does this go on?  How long does the addiction last?  How long will we go through this?

 

 

PEELE: It won't bring them economic recovery, so then they'll have to turn their attention to some other supposed method for attaining that until they go through all of them. Perhaps they can push through all of them. Perhaps people become discontented. Perhaps they will become discontented. And then I think people are likely to get riled up, and it could become a very angry movement, could potentially become a violent movement.

 

 

HECK: Well, you watch some of the far left socialist rallies in Los Angeles, in the streets of American cities where these SEIU or Teachers' union thugs are out there beating up tea partiers and threatening the lives of governing officials like Governor Scott Walker, or using all the violent imagery that we're hearing from folks on the left - Maureen Dowd calling tea partiers "vampires and cannibals," Vice President Biden calling them terrorists, leftwing homosexual activist nut Dan Savage who is supported by President Obama and a host of Democrat lawmakers saying he wishes all Republicans were "f---ing dead," Montel Williams wanting Michele Bachmann to slit her throat, Chris Matthews wondering when someone will shove a CO2 pellet in Rush Limbaugh's head, Liberal radio host Mike Malloy begging Glenn Beck to kill himself, liberal cartoonist David Fitzsimmons fantasizing about Obama calling out the Navy SEALs to assassinate tea party congressmen, the list keeps going and going and going - all this violent talk from the left and you begin to worry if the line between their hate rhetoric and actually hate actions is growing thin.

 

And what you're saying is that is precisely possible.  And again, you know your stuff.  You know psychosis when you see it.  You know delusion.

 

So what of the rest of us, Doctor?  All of us who realize what a mess this left-wing socialist movement led by Obama really is...how do you see the general population right now?  Looking at this movement - looking at the barren wasteland that they have made of the American economy, looking at the economic ruin they have wrought upon the job market, the housing market, the financial industry, the manufacturing world - scratching their heads and saying, "I thought we voted for change and hope?"  People who haven't felt this depressed about the state of our country since Jimmy Carter was in the White House.  How do you analyze the general population thinking back to the fake Greek pillars and the promises from this man who is now president that his ascension would see the rise of the oceans begin to recede and the planet begin to heal?

 

 

PEELE: I think right now they are mystified. They are thinking how did they succeed? It's like when you look at a child who throws a tantrum. How do they get to win this when it makes no sense what they are looking for? And, we're operating at a symbolic level here, and they control the symbolism now until at some point there's some dramatic horrible clash between all of this symbolism and what really we have to face in what is in our hands.

  

 

HECK: What is in our hands is a mess.  And as you've explained so eloquently this afternoon Doctor, a mess that is made by deluded and psychotic people addicted to taking over people's lives and ruining them.  I guess just like there comes a time when you have to rip that toy out of the hands of a spoiled child and send them to their room, the American voter has the duty to rip the reins of government from the hands of these statists like Obama and send them back to Chicago in 2012.

 

Well said today, Doctor Stanton Peele.  Thank you so much for your time this afternoon.

 

 

PEELE: Thank you, Martin.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 05 2011

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Just a day or two after picking up Oprah's ringing endorsement for his 2012 re-election campaign (Oprah said something to the effect of, "I hope everyone sees in him what I saw in him" oddly leaving out that she hopes everyone sees what he's done the last few years), and a few weeks after picking up the endorsement of the radically anti-American, anti-Christian National Education Association, Barack Obama has picked up another key endorsement to add to the list:

In an article last week at People's Weekly World, the official newspaper of the Communist Party USA, (Party Chairman Sam) Webb discussed the need for a third party consisting of the so-called working class and labor as well as "racially and nationally oppressed people, women, youth, immigrants, seniors, gay and straight."

 

Webb, however, recognized that such a party is not likely to emerge by next year.

"Millions who have to be at the core of this party still operate under the umbrella of the Democratic Party, albeit increasingly in an independent fashion," he noted.

 

Webb said that for communists there are major differences between Democrats and Republicans. He urged his supporters to continue to back the Democrats.

Criticizing Republicans of "lies and economic sabotage," the Communist Party leader praised that, "the election of Barack Obama was historic and gave space to struggle for a people's agenda."

 

Well there...you...go.  I don't know if any singular endorsement could say anymore than that to justify the arguments we conservatives have been making about the Obama administration, its aims, goals, and objectives.  If you are giving hope to the Commies, that's about as solid an argument against your commitment to freedom, economic liberty and national prosperity that there could be.  And for Republicans, when the Reds are accusing you of economic sabotage, wear it as a badge of honor.

 

It's interesting that this endorsement should come out right now.  Earlier this week I received a provocative video in my email inbox detailing the objectives of the Communist Party in "grinding America down."  The strategy according to the video included the destruction of the American family through cohabitation instead of marriage, getting children out of the home and into government schools at an earlier and earlier age, and the use of the feminist movement.

 

To destroy business, they would utilize the environmental movement because it could create enough red tape, regulation and burden on American business to bring it down.  I found this one particularly interesting given that I have commented on the show often that the modern environmental movement is nothing more than neo-Marxists whose objective has nothing to do with cleaning or saving the planet, but rather controlling business, energy and economies.  The reason environmentalism is such a great tool to use for the Communists is that people are less likely to resist the creeping hand of regulation that is destroying business if they think that they're saving cute, cuddly animals or preventing their streams from being contaminated.

 

And finally, in order to assault the moral center of the country, the communists decided to utilize the homosexual movement.  In the name of tolerance, they could grind down the base of traditional morality that all communist regimes seek to eradicate as they introduce the religion of the state.

 

 

So why was this an interesting coincidence to come into my inbox the very week the Communist Party USA endorses Obama?  Feminism, Universal Pre-K, Environmentalism, Homosexual "Rights" Agenda...this is the platform of the modern Democrat Party, and particularly of Barack Obama.

 

Frighteningly it all starts to come together.  The lines are clearly drawn.  On which side do you stand?
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 05 2011

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Conservatives everywhere agree: Marco Rubio is hot right now.  He was highly praised as a coming rockstar in the conservative movement during the 2010 election cycle.  Others touted him as presidential material by 2012.  Other still say that he would do wonders to the ticket of any soon-to-be Republican presidential nominee as a #2 man. 

 

On the other side, liberals taunted that Republicans were only elevating him because he wasn't white.  They argued that it was part of a desperate attempt to show that Republicans weren't all old white guys.

 

 

Setting aside the stupidity and inherent racism (and sexism) of that typical liberal position, anyone paying attention is realizing why the right is enamored with Rubio.  He is smart.  He is extremely articulate.  And he is a staunch conservative - not just in rhetoric, but in principle.

 

We could spend an entire segment talking about his eloquent speech in opposition to the debt ceiling "deal" last week.  But again, that's in the past.  What the country desperately needs is someone to lead going forward.  We talked yesterday about how we are a leaderless nation right now.  Rubio has great promise to fill that void.  Maybe sooner.  Maybe later.

 

You owe it to yourself, whether you're a liberal or a conservative, to listen to Rubio's entire speech given this week on the status of the country, our finances and our future.  Some of the highlights:

"We borrow $120 billion a month to pay our $300 billion-a-month bill," Rubio said. "And that's just too much money. That's too much money for Republicans; it's too much money for Democrats. It's just too much money."

 

While no one in either party would dispute that we have a problem, Rubio said, "The debate is how do we solve it, how do we generate more money for government and reduce the spending, at the same time?"

 

The debate, Rubio continued, is between those who believe the government's job is to promote "economic justice" and those who believe the government's job is to promote "economic opportunity."

This is a great point.  While everyone talks about finding middle ground and a "compromise" between the two sides, Rubio is one of the few politicians who seems to grasp that you can't truly find middle ground between two wholly separate worldviews.  In essence, one must win and one will lose.  That being said, notice that Rubio didn't trounce or demean the intentions or the motivations of those on the wrong side:

"One is not more moral than the other," Rubio said of the competing views. "They are two very different visions of the role of government in America. But it lies at the heart of the debate that we're having as a nation."

 

Those who believe more in "economic justice" think "there are some in America that make too much money and should pay more in their taxes. They believe that our government programs can stimulate economic growth. And they believe that perhaps America no longer needs to fund or can no longer afford to fund our national defense and our military at certain levels."

 

Those who believe more in "economic opportunity" think "our revenues should come not from more taxes but from more taxpayers. That what we need are more people being employed, more businesses being created. They'll pursue tax reform, they'll pursue regulatory reform, but ultimately we look for more revenue for government from economic growth, not from growth in taxes."

 

What's the solution to this conflict? "Ultimately, we may find that between these two points there may not be a middle ground," said Rubio. "And that, in fact, as a nation and as a people, we must decide what we want the role of government to be in America, moving forward."

Can I tell you what you're hearing?  Not substance wise, but the spirit of what you're experiencing as you listen to or as you read that?  You're experiencing leadership.  Not someone who says what itching ears want to hear.  Not someone who bathes his words in shallow rhetoric like making red and blue states purple.  Not in talking about flowery yet meaningless platitudes like "hope and change." 

 

This is someone who is exhibiting leadership.  Someone saying: "these are two divergent paths.I firmly believe one of them is right.  I will attempt to convince you that my path is right.  But I will not, under any circumstance mislead you into some false promise of forging a new one right down the middle.  It isn't possible and so to do so would be dishonest."

 

America has spent a long time dealing with politicians who are afraid or are unable to speak words like these.  It's refreshing that a new generation of statesmen may be emerging to lead us through a very divided era as we seek to set the course for the future of this country.  If that's what we're embarking on, I am one conservative who is very thankful Marco Rubio will be helping lead my side.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, August 05 2011

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Though columnist Amy Gesenhues declined my invitation to come on my radio program and defend the anti-Christian posturing of her original column, I am thankful that my challenge to her bigoted statements at least provoked her into spending an entire second column dancing around them.  Once again, Ms. Gesenhues demonstrated an inability to confront the self-contradictory nature of her remarks.  So let me make this as simple as possible.

 

In her original column, Gesenhues stated, "to believe you can teach someone how ?not to be gay' is.hateful in the most literal interpretation of the word."  She may find those words to be benign and non-judgmental.  But despite her protestations that she harbors no personal hostility towards anyone or any viewpoint, calling someone "hateful in the most literal interpretation of the word," Ms. Gesenhues, is quite hostile.  And who was she referring to with that statement?  Directly, she was referencing Dr. Marcus Bachmann, the husband of presidential candidate Michele Bachmann.  Dr. Bachmann runs a Christian counseling clinic that has been attacked for helping those with unwanted same-sex attraction find deliverance from those temptations and urges.  Apparently, Gesenhues' belief that, "you will never be wrong for being who you are," doesn't apply to those who seek help to become ex-gay.

 

 

But, whether intentional or not, Ms. Gesenhues was also indirectly attacking all Bible believing Christians.  First Corinthians 6: 9-11 clearly states the eternal penalty for unrepentant homosexual conduct, and follows it up by stating, "And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ."  In other words, when Ms. Gesenhues suggests that it is "hateful in the most literal interpretation of the word" to believe that a person can be delivered from the sin of homosexuality, she is castigating all Christians who believe in the redemptive power of Christ.

 

Not knowing Ms. Gesenhues, I can't say whether that was her intent.  I am more than happy to give her the benefit of the doubt and say that it wasn't.  But that doesn't change that it is the logical outworking of her words...words that I felt compelled to confront. 

 

In her original column, Gesenhues wrote that she, "wanted to write it to stand in opposition of any ideology...that teach hate."  My point to Ms. Gesenhues was, and remains, that Christians like myself who oppose homosexuality do not do so out of a sense of hatred.  We see the physical, psychological and spiritual consequences of the lifestyle, and are motivated by love to speak up against its destructive nature.

 

It is a shame that when we do, we are maligned as "hateful in the most literal interpretation of the word," by the very same people who pretend to be agents of compassion.  In her follow-up column, Gesenhues wrote, "When someone name-calls or bullies another or uses hostile means to convey a point, it is not about the person they are attacking. They are simply projecting their own anger (which is a front for their pain)."  This from the same woman who had just authored a piece calling Bible believers "hateful," and suggesting that our beliefs were "ridiculous," "unfair," "unjust," "hypocritical," and unloving.  Physician Gesenhues...heal thyself!
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 04 2011

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For the last couple weeks I've been repeating a common refrain: when looking for the difference between liberal and conservative policy, look to the states that are implementing both respectively, and gauge which one is better off.

 

Though this is a great tool to uncover what works and what doesn't, there will still be liberals that will deny its proof.  Oh, it doesn't matter if liberal states are almost bankrupt, they'll argue.  They'll blame the budget problems on natural disasters or unexpected crises (as though conservatively run states don't experience the same). 

 

But what they can't overcome is what political observers on both sides of the aisle have long seen as about the most objective standard of measuring the performance of a state (or country): do people want to live there?

 

In my ongoing case for conservative leadership, I present exhibit 1,187:

Taxed-out New Yorkers are voting with their feet, with a staggering 1.6 million residents fleeing the state over the last decade.

 

For the second consecutive decade, New York led the nation in the percentage of residents leaving for other states, according to the report by the Empire Center for State Policy.

 

The population loss is "the ultimate barometer of New York's attractiveness as a place to work, live and do business," the report's co-author, E.J. McMahon, said. "It's the ultimate indication that we've been doing things wrong."

 

Most analysts blamed New York's high taxes and skyrocketing cost of living for the mass exodus.

 

The Tax Foundation ranked New York highest in the nation in the combined state and local tax burden in 2008. And as small-business lobbyist Mike Durant noted, New York has also "consistently ranked worst or in the top three worst in business climate. You can't suck every penny out of people and expect them to remain in New York."

Or California.  Or Illinois.  Or Michigan.  Start checking off the list of areas run by liberals.  People are fleeing.  And where are they going, you ask?

Overall, the state's population grew by 2 percent between 2000 and 2010, but that rate that fell far behind states with lower taxes, growing economies and warmer climates like Nevada, Florida and Arizona, the three fastest-growing states, according to The New York Post .

States run by largely conservative policy.  Huh.  So which do you think should be implemented at the national level as we seek to be a happier, healthier, more prosperous union?  This isn't rocket science.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 04 2011

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When I heard that they were making Captain America into something far more politically correct like Captain Globe, I didn't lose too much sleep.  I was never into him anyway.  When I heard that they were "liberalizing" Superman, I started to get uncomfortable.

 

But now that they are killing off Spiderman, and replacing him with a half-black, half-Latino, possibly gay Obama lookalike, I've had it.  Seriously, look at the picture and tell me there's no resemblance to our President...

Here's the story:

He started life as a white science geek living with his uncle.  But now to reflect the racial changes in America Spider Man has been given a makeover - as a half black half Latino teen.

Miles Morales has replaced Peter Parker as the face behind the famous webbed mask, Marvel Comics has revealed.

 

In the latest edition of the Ultimate Fallout series he pulls back the disguise and shows his face for the first time.  Fans will have to wait until the official Spider Man relaunch next month to find out how he came to be the superhero.

 

But another surprise could be in the pipeline after his creators said that in the future they would not rule out making him gay.

That's tremendous.  Absolutely spectacular.  It's bad enough to have the Green Goblin kill Spiderman...imagine Lex Luther killing Superman.  But to replace him with a sexually confused teenage  crime fighter is just so steeped in politically correct stupidity that it would be nice if the entire comic book world would revolt.

 

But I suppose that's asking for too much.  I don't follow the comic book genre, but I'm guessing they are just as infected by the liberal PC virus as everyone else in our culture.  Why else would Marvel Comics think it wise to kill the web flinging villain vanquisher and replace him with the courage of a young boy struggling to embrace his alternative sexual identity?  Pathetic.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 04 2011

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Hats off to Representative Connie Mack of Florida for demonstrating the aggressive approach conservatives must take with the liberal sycophants of the mainstream media.  For too long, Republicans have withered the relentless badgering of left-wing "news" anchors masquerading as investigative reporting.  Democrats are never treated that way, unless they too are badgered from the left.

 

And too many Republicans come away looking like they've been scolded or corrected by the watchdog journalists.  Connie Mack appeared on CNN's Piers Morgan program and didn't let Morgan get away with being a Democrat spokesman.  He called him out and embarrassed him for his shameless shilling.

CNN's Piers Morgan kept bludgeoning Rep. Connie Mack (R-Fla.) with provocative liberal questions, and finally the congressman had enough of the theater. Mack berated the CNN host for making a "joke" out of his show during a testy interview Monday night.

Morgan and the congressman started bickering when Morgan asked whether Mack thought Speaker Boehner should resign because of the "terrible deal." Mack had voted against the bipartisan debt ceiling agreement, and Morgan tried to exploit any disagreement he held with his leader.

And check out the ridiculous screen caption!  It's "breaking news" that a Republican Representative who disagreed with the Republican Speaker doesn't think that the Republican Speaker needs to resign?  Does anyone remembering CNN slapping that graphic up every time they interviewed a Democrat representative who disagreed with Pelosi?  This is just an attempt to create the illusion of dissension and rift within Republican ranks.  And it's as transparent as it is silly.

Mack immediately shot down that notion, but Morgan then followed up with another provocative question. "If he [Boehner] done such a great job, why did you stab him in the back?"

Mack then went on the offensive. "Come on, don't be ridiculous with stuff like that. Now you're just making your show a joke." The CNN host was quite defensive and stood by his questions, yet Mack did not back down. "Well, when you say things like stab the Speaker in the back, that demeans your own show," he asserted.

Early in the interview, Morgan tried to pin the congressman with a non sequitur, asking him if he would be glad if the U.S. underwent a catastrophe because of failure to raise the debt ceiling. "Congressman, you voted no to a deal that got bipartisan support and saved America from going into catastrophic default. So I can only assume that you would have been quite happy for your country to go into catastrophic default?" Morgan asked.

When Mack argued that plenty of economists believe that increased taxes would kill economic growth right now, Morgan shot back "I'm sure you've heard of Paul Krugman, for example. He won a Nobel Prize for economics." Krugman is a liberal columnist for the New York Times.

Krugman!  Yes, he seriously cited Krugman...a man whose economic theories have not only been demonstrated to be colossal failures on paper, but the unfolding economic mess in the U.S. is proof positive of how clueless this "Nobel Laureate" really is.  Oh, and by the way, let's not forget that Barack Obama, Jimmy Carter and Al Gore have all won the Nobel prize.  How dignified can this award - clearly given with political considerations trumping reality - be anymore?

 

Anyway, it's clear if you watch the video that Morgan was taken aback by Mack's approach.  He got defensive.  He felt his professionalism was being questioned.  And guess what?  It should be.  If these media types want to be unapologetic liberal advocates, that's more than fine.  But the days of them pretending to be anything other than that must be over.


In a country where conservatives outnumber liberals 2 to 1, people should be made aware that they aren't watching a conservative struggle to answer the objective questions of journalists without an agenda.  They are watching a conservative fight back against an aggressively liberal host who brought them on the show to try to embarrass them in front of the country.

 

If conservatives and Republicans would follow Mack's example, it's clear that it wouldn't be them walking away embarrassed and humiliated.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, August 04 2011

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I think highly of Paul Ryan.  The man is brilliant, judicious, a constitutionalist and the kind of idea man the Republican Party needs.  While Newt Gingrich was once known for innovative ideas, he lacked the conservative grounding that Paul Ryan has.  He also lacked the kind of respectability factor that Ryan carries with him.

 

 

I'm still trying to figure out why a guy like Ryan - a guy who gets it...and a guy who I think would have been an excellent presidential candidate to square off against Obama in 2012 - supported this mess of a "debt deal."  Of course, I'm wondering that about others I feel strongly about like Mike Pence.  There are various reasons and excuses we could come up with, but it is still remarkably disappointing.

 

Nevertheless, looking to the future, we are going to need people like Ryan.  And in his recent Wall Street Journal op-ed, he proved why.  Returning to the smart, sharp form that until this recent debt deal collapse had come to characterize the man from Wisconsin, Ryan put the pressure on President Obama to come forward with some kind of budget plan for the future (something the President, shockingly, still has not produced):

Ever since they abused the budget process to jam their health-care takeover through Congress last year, the Democrats have simply done away with serious budgeting altogether. The simplest explanation?and the president's real bluff?is that they don't want to commit publicly to the kind of tax increases and health-care rationing that would be required to sustain their archaic vision of government.

 

The president's February budget deliberately dodged the tough choices necessary to confront the threat of runaway federal spending. It was rejected unanimously in a Senate controlled by his own party.

 

Since then he has offered a lot of rhetoric but no real plan to avoid a spending-driven debt crisis. His speeches and press conferences are no substitutes for actual budgets with specific numbers and independently verified projections of future deficits and debt. Meanwhile, it has been over two years since the Democrat-controlled Senate passed any budget at all. This is a historic failure to fulfill one of the most basic responsibilities of governing.

Barack Obama loved to talk (and loves to talk) about making "the tough choices."  But if there is one thing that the career of Barack Obama teaches us, it is that he avoids tough choices like the plague.  Back to his days of voting present on every controversial bill that came before the Illinois legislature, the man has an aversion to leadership.  Probably not a great idea to select someone like that to be the nation's chief executive, but that's water under the bridge.  Maybe the majority of voters in 2008 thought that he would have to lead by virtue of his position, despite his record.  It hasn't happened.  The president gives speeches.  He doesn't give budgets or leadership.

 

The problem with that is, of course, it creates chaos and confusion.  When there is no leadership from the president, that provokes calamity in the nation's economic health, which is exactly what we're witnessing.  The president's confused position has left us all hanging, and uncertainty is a death knell to economic growth.  As Ryan explains,

The math is scary, yet simple: In the years ahead, spending on programs such as Medicare, Medicaid and the Democrats' new health-care entitlements is projected to skyrocket relative to the size of the economy, even as federal spending on everything else is projected to decline.

 

Even the president seems to understand that the status quo of these programs is unsustainable. As he put it during a press conference on July 11, "If you look at the numbers, then Medicare in particular will run out of money, and we will not be able to sustain that program no matter how much taxes go up."

 

On this point, Mr. Obama and I couldn't agree more. Where we disagree is over how best to confront this problem.

And that's perhaps the most frightening part about this situation.  The policies the Democrats have enacted under Obama don't go towards providing stability, but creating even more confusion and concern.  For instance:

The president's health-care law represents an attempt to double down on the failed policies of the past. Despite claims that new methods of reimbursing Medicare providers will tame costs, the fact is that the federal bureaucracy has tried most of the measures before, without any success.

 

 

Worse, the law would create a new 15-member board of bureaucrats empowered to bypass Congress to make deep cuts in payments to Medicare providers. Time and again, such provider cuts have had two consequences: Providers have either increased the volume of services they provide for each condition, or they have stopped accepting Medicare patients altogether.

 

There is a better way?structural reforms that empower patients with greater choices and increase the role of competition in the health-care marketplace. The budget passed by the House of Representatives in April, "The Path to Prosperity," outlined the beginnings of such an approach by repealing the president's health-care law and proposing reforms that would make Medicare and Medicaid stronger and solvent for current and future generations.

 

In other words, we've put our cards on the table: According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), our plan puts the federal budget on the path to balance without resorting to job-destroying tax hikes. It will eliminate the shadow of debt that is discouraging job creation while advancing pro-growth tax reforms to get the economy moving again.

 

By contrast, the president and his party's leaders have refused to submit specific, credible budget plans that tackle health-care costs while restoring economic growth. Unwilling to reconsider their failed bureaucratic approaches to health and retirement security, the Democrats can only propose tax increases, and lots of them.

That's what to expect from Obama and the Dems going forward.  That's what they will seek to produce from this newly created "Super Congress."  Paul Ryan has himself to thank for that headache.  But we need him.  We need others like him to keep laying forward the straight forward common sense that Obama desperately lacks, and we desperately need.  We are hurrying towards a cliff right now, and time to reverse course is growing short.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 03 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

As more continues to come out about this "Budget Debt Deal" hastily agreed to by Congress (including too many common sense Republicans), the worse the whole thing stinks.  Perhaps one of the most concerning elements of the deal is the creation of what is being called the "Super Congress."  This bipartisan committee is being invested with power that is essentially extra-constitutional, and thus quite possibly, unconstitutional.

 

 

One of the Constitution's fiercest defenders on Capitol Hill, Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, explained why:

In a statement made yesterday in response to the passage of the Budget Control Act, Congressman Ron Paul expressed his alarm at the establishment of this "disturbing" new committee, and warned that it would be used to ram through tax increases.

 

"The legislation produced by this commission will be fast-tracked, and Members will not have the opportunity to offer amendments," said Paul. "Approval of the recommendations of the "Super Congress" is tied to yet another debt ceiling increase. This guarantees that Members will face tremendous pressure to vote for whatever comes out of this commission- even if it includes tax increases. This provision is an excellent way to keep spending decisions out of the reach of members who are not on board with the leadership's agenda."

 

The Congressman added that the committee represents "Nothing more than a way to disenfranchise the majority of Congress by denying them the chance for meaningful participation in the crucial areas of entitlement and tax reform. It cedes power to draft legislation to a special commission, hand-picked by the House and Senate leadership."

Undoubtedly, the logic behind the creation of such a "Super Congress" is that it will speed up important legislation that we just can't afford to let drag on.  But there's a reason that the legislative process was intentionally designed by our Founders to be a slow and deliberate process.  The Founders wisely understood that a government that can quickly make knee-jerk laws is one that is difficult to control, and will quickly become unaccountable and abusive.

 

Further, this Budget Debt Deal itself is proof of why legislation produced in a pinch, in a hurry, and by a small committee of leaders is not a good way to run a railroad.  Besides disenfranchising the vast majority of Congressmen (and thus the people who elected them), this type of governing system is far more reflective of oligarchy than it is democracy.

 

This is a development that can spiral out of control very quickly.  While this type of power consolidating action is totally predictable coming from the same Democrat Party whose leaders tout that the "federal government can do whatever it wants to do," it is unacceptable that this dangerous threat to representative democracy could slip by Republicans who were elected by a movement totally opposed to this type of chicanery. 

 

More than anything it proves the need for eternal vigilance, and for making sure those who fail to see this as a dangerous mistake must be replaced.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:09 pm   |  Permalink   |  1 Comment  |  Email
Wednesday, August 03 2011

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More and more political thinkers and talkers are beginning to address the obvious: Barack Obama is in trouble.  Big trouble.  That he is beatable is an understatement.  Given the realities of what he has done to our economy, the man is landslide beatable.

 

Set aside all the talk of Democrat fracturing.  Set aside the clueless and backwards foreign policy that shuns friends and coddles enemies...and the fact that at times it seems we are running two different foreign policies concurrently.  Set all of that to the side and just look at our economy:

The U.S. Department of Commerce released its economic growth estimates for the second quarter of 2011 and they are, well, dismal. And depressing. The economy grew just 1.3 percent from April to June of this year, well below the 2.5 percent necessary to chip away at unemployment. What's worse, estimates of growth for the first quarter were revised downward to just 0.4 percent.

 

 

According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis press release:

 

The increase in real GDP in the second quarter primarily reflected positive contributions from exports, nonresidential fixed investment, private inventory investment, and federal government spending that were partly offset by a negative contribution from state and local government spending. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.

 

The acceleration in real GDP in the second quarter primarily reflected a deceleration in imports, an upturn in federal government spending, and an acceleration in nonresidential fixed investment that were partly offset by a sharp deceleration in personal consumption expenditures.

 

The deceleration of personal consumer spending is particularly troubling for the Obama administration, since the entire stimulus package assumed that consumer spending was the key to reviving the economy. Goosing consumers would lead to long-term growth.

And nothing of the sort has materialized.  The other night in his desperate debt ceiling speech, Obama once again attempted to blame George W. Bush for all of his woes.  Observant folks are starting to realize that maybe we should have realized early on that his penchant for looking in the rear-view mirror when discussing our problems was an indicator that he had no idea how to chart a course forward.

 

Because looking at the GDP (state of the economy) numbers since he has taken office, what you don't see is an inheritance problem.  You see a vision problem.

2009 2nd Qtr:     -0.7%
2009 3rd Qtr:     1.7%
2009 4th Qtr      3.8%
2010 1st Qtr:    3.9%
2010 2nd Qtr:    3.8%
2010 3rd Qtr:    2.5%
2010 4th Qtr:    2.3%
2011 1st Qtr:    0.4%
2011 2nd Qtr:    1.3%

The American economy is stagnating, and the reason is because our leadership wrongly believes that the government is the engine of that economy.  The most telling part of those numbers is that when the majority of the Obama stimulus started hitting was when the numbers began a nose-dive. 

 

Team Obama has enacted policies to grow the size and scope of government at the expense of the private sector.  But that private sector is the real heart of our economic stability.  The results are self-evident, and completely logical.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 03 2011

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It's a standing rule on my radio show for liberal listeners: you bring up the "stupidity" of Sarah Palin or Michele Bachmann, you must be prepared to defend the intellects of Nancy Pelosi or our favorite Congresswoman, Sheila Jackson Lee.


The latter had another typically embarrassing performance the other day during Security hearings on the radicalization of young Somali Muslims in the United States.  Keep in mind, this hearing is about protecting Americans against a grave and serious and mounting threat.

 

Before Jackson Lee was recognized by Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.), the committee chairman, the panel of witnesses gave details about how al-Shabaab, an affiliate of al-Qaeda, is recruiting young Somali men who live in the United States to travel to that African nation to participate  in terrorist training camps.

 

"Early in 2011, Canadian national security officials confirmed the disappearances of dozens of young Canadian Somali males who had traveled to Somalia to fight for the Al Shabaab, a terrorist group that is officially allied with al Qaeda and al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula," said Ahmed Hussen, Canadian Somali Congress National President, at the hearing. "Three of these individuals have died in Somalia fighting for this group."

 

"The unique and extraordinary threats to national security that foreign terrorist organizations present to the United States are abundantly clear," W. Anders Folk, former assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Minnesota, testified. "Al-Shabaab's successful recruitment of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents, and the existence of a base of ideological and actual support for al-Shabaab in the United States raise a number of issues that require study in order to ensure that the United States maintains its safety in the face of the threat posed by the group."

 

Minnesota has one of the largest Somali populations in the United States, according to witnesses who testified at the hearing.

 

In his opening remarks, Chairman King described how the hearing would reveal the "direct threat" al-Shabaab poses to the United States.

 

"You will hear how al-Shabaab, who bin Laden called one of the most important armies of Islam, is engaged in an ongoing, successful effort to recruit and radicalize dozens of Muslim-American jihadis, who pose a direct threat to the U.S.," King said.

Remember, before Republicans took over the House following the Tea Party wave of 2010, these kinds of hearings weren't taking place.  Democrats were focused on how global warming might be causing a national security risk, or about how Jesus camps might be fostering hate.  It's a perfect demonstration of how fundamentally unserious the left is when it comes to protecting Americans from the threat posed by radical Islam.  They won't even say the phrase, no less hold hearings to investigate its growth.

 

And as if that wasn't condemning enough, when it was finally liberal Lee's chance to speak about this serious threat to your family and mine, what did she come up with?

Jackson Lee used much of her allotted five minutes to question panelists with expertise on radicalization about the alleged hacking into telephones of 9-11 victims by the now-closed News of the World tabloid in England.

 

"I would add to that, that I would like to have a hearing on right-wing extremists, ideologues who advocate violence and advocate, in essence, the terrorizing of certain groups," Jackson Lee said.

That's what Sheila and the left would be doing with taxpayer funded intelligence hearings if they were put back in charge of the House of Representatives.  This woman is an embarrassment to her Party and her constituents.  But she is also a shining example of the type of politically-correct paralysis that has overcome the left. 

 

For our own security, they cannot be trusted, they cannot be taken seriously, and they cannot be returned to power.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Wednesday, August 03 2011

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ObamaCare continues to reek havoc on our economy and it hasn't even been fully implemented.  One of the many major arguments conservatives were making against the healthcare takeover plan during the national debate was that it would drive innovative medical device makers out of business with new fees, or at least drive them overseas to do business.

 

Barack Obama and his Democrat puppets like Congressman Joe Donnelly of Indiana, saw all of that to be bluster.  Nothing like that would happen, they assured.  Just like they promised you'd be able to keep your own insurer if you were happy with them...which you can't.  Just like they promised it would drive the cost of healthcare down...which it isn't.

 

 

And now news comes out that...get ready to contain your shock...a medical device maker is cutting jobs and shipping business to China!

Boston Scientific Corp. said yesterday that it plans to eliminate 1,200 to 1,400 jobs worldwide during the next 2 ½ years to free money for new investments, the Natick medical device maker's second major round of cuts since last year.

 

The company would not say how many jobs will be lost in Massachusetts, where fewer than 2,000 of its 25,000 employees are based. In February 2010, Boston Scientific said it would pare 1,300 jobs worldwide, but similarly did not say where.

 

...

 

Yesterday's move, a day after Boston Scientific disclosed it was investing $150 million and hiring 1,000 people in China, raised fears that the company will gradually shift more work to foreign sites with less government oversight and lower costs than the United States.

Yes, Barack Obama should be held accountable for this.  But he's not alone.  Every lawmaker who intentionally and flagrantly ignored the voices of his or her constituents and voted for this job-killing, economy-stunting, healthcare-imploding piece of garbage needs to be forced to answer for every single one of these dire consequences we saw coming, and they promised would not.

 

If they're not held accountable for the deception, and we don't take corrective action (repealing the bill) we get what's coming.  And with as bad as it is right now, believe it...you ain't seen nothing yet.

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 02 2011

In case you didn't catch Peter's announcement today on his radio show...Attaboy Productions, Inc. is very excited to announce the release of Peter Heck's first book:

 

 

This book has been several years in the making, but is arriving at just the right time, as America faces an election cycle in 2012 of the utmost importance.  Go to the book's website: www.78thebook.com to find out more information on the book that has already received raving reviews from some of the pro-family movement's most influential voices.

 

 

Tim Wildmon, President of the American Family Association, says:

 

"Smart...funny...and inspiring!  This powerfully compelling book is a must-read for Christians who are ready to engage and win back American culture."

 

 

 

Matt Barber, Washington Times columnist and Vice President of Liberty Counsel Action, agrees:

 

"Peter Heck pierces the heart of political correctness and false tolerance with this blunt, clever and witty book.  For Christians who feel bombarded and outgunned, 78 provides an arsenal to overcome the forces of darkness."

 

 

The book "drops" (becomes eligible for purchase) on September 1st, and though it will be available at Amazon.com, make sure to get your copy at www.78thebook.com where you can purchase autographed copies or get the book on audio CD to listen in your car!  

 

We'll keep you posted about release details as September 1st gets closer, but take the time to go to www.78thebook.com right now and see what all the buzz is about!

Posted by: Anna Anderson AT 11:11 pm   |  Permalink   |  3 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 02 2011

Just a couple weeks ago, Peter discussed the ridiculous lawsuit brought by the Freedom From Religion Foundation against Texas Governor Rick Perry's day of prayer and fasting coming up on August 6th.  The militant group was especially ticked off that Governor Perry dared to mention the name "Jesus Christ" in connection to the event.

 

Not surprisingly, a federal court judge has dismissed the FFRF's lawsuit on the grounds that it's...well...just, plain stupid.  Read the story about the judge's decision here.

 

Family Research Council Senior Fellow Ken Klukowski was the author of that piece, and has followed this, as well as a number of other stupid lawsuits brought by FFRF. 

 

 

On Tuesday's show, Peter invited Ken onto the program for a full discussion about these kinds of assaults on the rights of conscience and the freedom of religion.

 

Here the full conversation here.

Posted by: Anna Anderson AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 02 2011

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Last week I marveled at the Tea Party's newest member, Chris Matthews of MSNBC.  No doubt he has taken quick action to make amends for his little jaunt into the land of rational thought (something that is heavily discouraged on his network), and has returned to smearing the people he seemed to agree with in a rare moment of candor as haters and bigots again.

 

But lo and behold, the ink had barely dried on our Matthews report, when Senator Jon Kyl of Arizona pointed out that there's yet another surprising Tea Partier in our midst...well, at least in a former life.

Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl says the debt-ceiling process has come far since President Barack Obama asked for a clean increase without spending cuts and that the tea party's reluctance to go along with the deal is reminiscent of the president's stance when he was a senator representing Illinois.

 

...

 

"The tea party folks in the House who say they're standing on principle not to raise the debt ceiling remind me a lot of Senator Barack Obama, who did the same thing ? voting against the debt ceiling increase when he was in the Senate," Kyl said.

"Sometimes people are just so firm in their beliefs that they think that they have to vote against the debt ceiling increase, even though the majority of us in both the Republican and Democratic parties believe that that would be a mistake," he said.

Isn't that interesting?  On principle, Mr. Obama opposed raising the debt ceiling.  No doubt, he believed doing so to be irresponsible.  We all remember his adamant stance during the debate with Hillary that he would not be taking out a credit card from the Bank of China with our kids and grandkids names on it.  He told us that's how we got all that debt on George Bush's watch and that it would stop when he was President.

 

Yes, and by "stop" he really meant, get 10 times worse.  And by "not taking out a credit card" he meant, take out 100 instead.

 

But it's nice to see that at least once, back at the beginning of his Senate career (which also seemed to be the beginning of his presidential campaign), Mr. Obama understood the need for fiscal restraint.  Wouldn't it be nice if that's the Obama that would have won the presidency?

Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, August 02 2011

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I recently read a fascinating piece by Henry Payne at National Review.  One of the common themes of the radio show recently has been that if we look to the "laboratories of democracy" (the states), we can see the success or failure rate of many of the same policies our federal government thinks about enacting before they enact it.

 

We should have learned from RomneyCare that ObamaCare was going to be a nightmare, for instance.  But then there are examples of state action that the federal government would be wise to enact, based on the success rates experienced at the state level.  In a larger sense, I've encouraged listeners to look at the states run by conservative policy (Texas, Indiana, Wisconsin) and those run by liberal policy (Michigan, Illinois, New York, California) and see which ones seem to be on more solid footing.

 

 

That's why I loved Payne's piece.  In all this talk about the debt ceiling and the budget situation, Payne points out, we don't have to guess about what will result from certain policy ideas, particularly the Democrats' ideas.  Why?  Because it's already been experimented with...welcome to Michigan 2007:

In 2007, a liberal governor's determination to enact permanent big spending hikes and tax increases set Michigan on course for a budget war. Granholm's threat of a shutdown came on the heels of a budget that proposed hundreds of millions of dollars in new "investments" ? as she and Obama like to call spending ? and, to pay for it, proposed a new services tax. This, even as Michigan's economy swirled down the drain.

 

A crucial difference between 2007 and today is that Granholm had won a landslide election the year before, with Democrats regaining the house and eroding the Republicans' senate majority. But even riding this wave of support, Granholm provoked an immediate public backlash when she suggested tax and spending hikes. A Tea Party-esque movement ? led by a teabag-waving, pig-hauling activist named Leon Drolet ? emerged to recall legislators who supported the tax hike.

 

The lines were drawn. Pro-tax Democrats vs. anti-tax Republicans.

 

Michigan's economy was struggling, with an unemployment rate hovering 50 percent above the national average. Ratings services added to the drama by downgrading Michigan's bond rating from "AA− with a stable outlook" to "AA− with a negative outlook."

 

Yet Democrats insisted on hiking taxes rather than making structural reforms to the state's Medicaid program and public-employee health benefits, which together were swallowing Michigan's budget whole. Republicans tried to plug the $800 million budget gap with a cuts-only approach, but they controlled only one house of the legislature.

 

Governor Granholm reacted with a page right of Obama's playbook. "People will die," she said, if GOP cuts to Medicaid and other social services passed.

 

No leadership. No structural reforms. Just a relentless threat that she would begin "shutting down" the government. Like Obama today, Granholm "appeared to be disassociated from the process, except to issue occasional press releases criticizing ?the legislature' or ?Senate Republicans' for failing to adopt her budget recommendations," wrote the Mackinac Center, a state think tank.

 

Under pressure from the state's balanced-budget requirement ? another crucial difference between Michigan then and Washington today ? and after a brief government shutdown on October 1, Senate Republicans warily agreed to a deal involving a mix of tax hikes and benefits reform. They agreed to hike income taxes by 12 percent and impose a new set of service taxes on select business activity, raising $1.5 billion. In return, Republicans got fragile promises of spending reform.

 

"This budget agreement is the right solution for Michigan," crowed a victorious Granholm. "We prevented massive cuts to public education, health care, and public safety while also making extensive government reforms and passing new revenue. With the state back on solid financial footing, we can turn our focus to the critical task of jumpstarting our economy and creating new jobs."

Republicans caved.  Democrats got their way.  The left's solution had been put in place.  And did it work?  No need to guess, friends...we see the results of the left-wing approach in crystal clear detail:

"Within literally hours of passing the tax hike," recounts Mackinac Center legislative analyst Jack McHugh, "the legislature passed bills spending the entire $1.4 billion." By the time Granholm handed over the wheel to Republican Rick Snyder three years later, the deficit had ballooned to $2 billion amidst a stalled economy.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result.  Hopefully the Republicans in Washington have studied a little Michigan history and will pass their sanity exam.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 01 2011

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A freelance writer named Amy Gesenhues recently graced the pages of my hometown newspaper.  The topic was homosexuality and Amy took an unapologetically pro-homosexuality, anti-Christian stance in her piece.  Yet, she inspired me.

 

 

Let me explain.  The column itself wasn't that persuasive.  In fact, having read much from those advocating the expansion of what they call "gay and lesbian rights" (it's always interesting when I ask them to list for me the rights that are being denied to those who practice homosexuality.you can hear the faucet drip as they struggle to come up with anything), Gesenhues' piece didn't come close.

 

It became clear to most anyone reading it that Gesenhues had settled to write an emotional screed full of a heavy dose of passion, but not balanced by even a hint of reason or logic to support her positions.

 

As most all those involved in the cause to condone and publicly celebrate sexual decadence do, Gesenhues said it was all about love.  And she made sure that we knew she was teaching her children that hippy-inspired philosophy:

Our kids will grow up knowing that there is nothing wrong with loving someone. They will understand that a mature love between two consenting adults ? regardless if the two adults are both female or both male ? is human nature.

A couple interesting observations here.  Amy doesn't bother to define love.  It's fairly obvious that she believes it to be an emotional and romantic response and feeling toward another person.  Because true love, of course, is desiring the ultimate good of the object.  That certainly is not true of homosexuality - when you look at the physical, psychological, and spiritual effects of homosexuality, if a man truly loved another man, he would not even think about engaging in such acts with him.

 

But also, notice that Ms. Gesenhues says that mature love between two consenting adults is human nature.  That's curious.  I'll come back to that.  In her next paragraph she writes:

If my kids follow what their parents believe, they will know that love is the reason we are all here. They will understand that the real foundation of a healthy relationship is not about whom you love, but the ability to love openly and whole-heartedly.

The foundation of a healthy relationship is just loving openly and whole-heartedly.  Does Ms. Gesenhues really believe this?  Will she remain true to that position?  Actually, she won't.  Refer to that previous comment, where Gesenhues took the morally judgmental position of declaring only love between TWO consenting adults was legitimate in her mind.  If your personal sexual expression is polyamory, well Amy apparently has it in for you.  Your love isn't legitimate.  Your love isn't real.  Your love can be discriminated against...because Amy says so.  She's a prophetess of hate towards you, evidently.  See what's happening?  Ms. Gesenhues is falling on her own sword and she doesn't even realize it.  Because I am judging her by her own standards; her own definition of hatred that she gives to us:

Whether or not you support gay and lesbian rights is most definitely your prerogative. But, to believe you can teach someone how "not to be gay" is . hateful in the most literal interpretation of the word. How could "teaching" someone to be different from their true nature ? when their true nature is in no way harmful to themselves or others ? be acceptable? It is the same as teaching someone how not to be compassionate. Or inquisitive. Or a brunette.

Got that?  It is "hateful" to oppose whatever personal sexual expression another individual wants to embrace.  As Amy writes in her concluding sentence, "You will never be wrong for being who you are."  But does Amy believe that for those who are pedophiles?  What about the 51 year old actor who just wedded a 16 year old girl?  Is Amy going to condemn that?  And bestiality?  Will Amy be so judgmental as to tell someone who wants to experience sexual intimacy with different species that they are wrong?  Will she try to teach them how "not to be into" that kind of sexual activity?  And polygamists?  Amy is guilty of the very same moral judgment she condemns in others.

 

 

So how did this epic depiction of self-contradictory moral relativism inspire me, you ask?  The reason Amy wrote this piece, she says, is to support those she loves - those who practice homosexuality who she says are victims of hate and discrimination.  I feel the same way.  Which is why I have decided to confront her hate and discrimination against people I care about - people of faith.

 

I invited Ms. Gesenhues to come on the show and talk about this issue.  She declined.  I'm not surprised.  It seems to be an emerging trend for the prophets of false tolerance.  

 

After all, it is easier to foment hatred toward Christians and those of us defending the notion of traditional morality from behind a keyboard than to defend those accusations and bigoted statements publicly when confronted with them. 

 

Picking up on a theme she wrote about, I have many friends and family members who are Christians, and who oppose homosexuality because of its dire physical, psychological, and spiritual consequences.  And I take umbrage at people like Gesenhues who callously suggest their motives are born of hatred and not love and concern.  I take seriously the responsibility to use my platform to call out that form of hatred.

 

I gave her the opportunity to defend it, but it's tough to defend the indefensible.
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:08 pm   |  Permalink   |  52 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 01 2011

Late Sunday evening the "Debt Deal" was announced by President Obama and Congressional leaders.  Skepticism abounds.  While Boehner says it's all spending cuts, tea party leaders and staunch conservatives from Beck to Limbaugh suggest it's a crock...that the spending cuts aren't real, will never materialize, and this will amount to nothing more than just an extension to run up more debt.

 

 

Other observers like the Wall Street Journal believe this to be a victory for the forces of small government.  They suggest, like Boehner, that the most impressive part of this deal is that it has totally changed the tone of the debate in Washington.  Their advice is to take the deal, make the most of it, and be thrilled that there is new ground upon which to fight in D.C.

 

On Monday's program, Peter invited friend of the show, and economics guru Craig Jackson, on to talk about the deal.  Craig's insight tied the announcement to something practical: the NFL labor agreement. 

 

Hear Peter and Craig's revealing and interesting analysis of the situation here.

Posted by: Anna Anderson AT 05:07 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, August 01 2011

Hear the audio version here (segments older than 3 weeks may be unavailable)

 

It's nice to see that even in the midst of this climate of crisis they have helped generate, the folks over at MSNBC can still take time to laugh.  And what is it that makes them chuckle, you ask?  Being the good liberals that they are, any reference to organized Christian orthodoxy, of course!

 

Guest hosting Rachel Maddow's show, Melissa Harris-Perry, who doubles as a professor at Tulane, just seemed overly entertained by the idea that lawmakers in Washington would turn to prayer at a time of confusion and discord:

 

After leaving Speaker Boehner's office, Republican congressman Louie Gohmert of Texas informed reporters that he was still 'a bloodied and beaten no.' And according to NBC's Luke Russert, Republican congressman Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina, who also plans to vote no, exited Speaker Boehner's office and then headed straight to a small chapel in the Capitol, telling reporters he was going to (pause for effect) pray for his leadership.

 

And Republican congressman Steve Southerland of Florida also told reporters that he was a no and when asked if anything could change his mind, he said, 'If the Lord takes me home right now.'

Harris-Perry chuckled at the notion again later when Luke Russert brought up the appeal to the Almighty with a tone of mockery as well.

 

One must wonder how these enlightened and evolved liberals might have reported on the scene breaking out in revolutionary America:

Washington was kneeling there, and Henry, Randolph, Rutledge, Lee, and Jay, and by their side there stood bowed in reverence, the Puritan Patriots of New England, who at that moment had reason to believe that an armed soldiery was wasting their humble households. It was believed that Boston had been bombarded and destroyed. They prayed fervently "for America, for Congress, for the Province of Massachusetts Bay, and especially for the town of Boston", and who can realize the emotions with which they turned imploringly to Heaven for Divine interposition and aid. "It was enough", says Mr. Adams to melt a heart of stone.

I'm curious: if humble prayer at a time of national crisis is enough to melt a heart of stone, and yet brings uncontrollable fits of giggles to the crew at MSNBC, what does that say about the hearts of these liberals?
Posted by: Peter Heck AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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