Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Eagle Freedom Links -- 11-30-10


Opus#6 of American Perspective asks Is the End really near?

A Common Patriot ponders whether Obama, Clinton are coat-tailing Newt Gingrich.

Sig94 at Goomba News Network posts on Winston Churchill - Prophet.

Nickie of Goomba News Network posts on Gaza.

Christine of A Catholic View shows us about Theo-Psychology.

A Conservative Teacher questions whether Obama sold out allies for a bill of goods?

Rotti of A Patriotic Rottweiler posts how the TSA= Thousands Standing Around.

JR at A Western Heart posts on U.S. Homeland Security seizing internet sites without notice.

Acts of Apostasy asks whether Scientists have discovered a reverse-aging process?

Always Catholic posts on The First Sunday of Advent.

Allied Liberty has a special request for celebrating Ronald Reagan Day.

Always on Watch posts about hurt feelings & suspension on the new site.

America! Oh How We'll Miss You! shows us something about Islam you should know.

Another Black Conservative posts on Obama's announcement of a government employee pay freeze.

Barking Spider shows us the amazing Nigel Farage on To be or Not to be?

BBCW posts on the Feds sending a Huge bill to New Jersey for a canceled project.

Big Blue Wave posts a quotation on truth.

Blowing San #1 asks how soon before we see vigilante committees?

Bluegrass Pundit shows us Bill O'Reilly calling for execution of Wikileaker.

Bluepitbull posts on the NY Times and their balancing act.

Bread Upon the Waters posts on global warming being beneficial to human health.

LL of Can we keep our Republic posts on the Federal pay freeze.

Christian Conservative gives us an interview with General Boykin.

Common Cents shows us Krauthammer ripping liberals for being obsessed with Palin.

Chris from Conservative Perspective poses the question: Does Christianity really exist?

Conservative Girl With a Voice posts on PDS liberal rant's epic fail.

Conservative Scalawag posts on This Day in Tyranny.

Conservative Hideout posts that some statists who believe in global warming propose rationing.

Creative Minority Report posts on Planned Parenthood signs and truth in advertising.

CVSTOS FIDEI shows how Wikileaks reveals that US never expected Ratzinger elected Pope.

DeanO posts on state democrats defecting to GOP.

Diary of a right wing loving pussy cat points out mass murder in a gun free zone.

Jamie of Eye of Polyphemus posts on the passing of Irvin Kershner.

Snarky of Feed Your ADHD shows us the TSA theme song.

Fuzzy Slippers of Fuzzy Logic asks whether Sarah can get back that blank slate she had back in 2008?

Generation Dysfunction says its time to stop START.

Global Domination posts Palin's Thanksgiving message to "all 57 states".

Hack Wilson tells us why you should never rob an Italian Restaurant.

Innominatus posts on the psycho that was too close to home.

JimMcMahonChicago wonders why no salute for Staff Sergeant Giunta?

Jo-Joe Politico gives us the profile of a terrorist.

Just a Conservative Girl shows us Dennis Miller's Big speech.

Just An Artist gives us a funny conversation on fancy strawberries.

Left Coast Rebel informs us of an earthquake striking off the coast of Southampton, NY.

Let The Truth Be Known posts on Thanksgiving dinner, William Shatner & 2nd Amendment.

Lone Star Parson posts on Muslim genocide.

Maggie's Notebook shows us Bobby Jindal: Obama's Security a Treatise on Justice.

Mind Numbed Robot gives us Christina Aguilera for his rule 5 post.

Musings of a vast right winger posts that Kerry called on Israel to cede Golan Heights and East Jerusalem.

My Daily Trek posts a poll taken on the King James Bible.

My Thoughts on Freedom posts on The Repeal Amendment.

Obama Cartoons posts on the Pope and Condoms.

Quickwit asks Are you smarter than a fifth grader?

Randy's Roundtable informs us that Mike Pence will decide on WH run after New Years.

Reaganite Republican posts on Wikileaks: Israel ready to strike Iran.

Ruby Slippers has posted W's interview on facebook.

Self Evident Truths posts on Evan Sayat and the indiscriminate Left.

Stop Marxism shows us Michael Berry at "America Strikes Back".

Cube of The Blog posts on Unrighteous Indignation.

The Born Again Americans asks and answers What can I do?

The Conservative Lady posts on the Smithsonian Christmas exhibit featuring Ant-covered Jesus and more...

The Current posts on Our Constitution and Ignorance of Intent.

The Malcontent posts on Obama's accomplishments and Wikileaks.

The Wisdom of Soloman asks Did Sarah Palin mis-Speak?

They Say/ We Say posts on a storm a brewing.

TOTUS says Hands off my junk.

Trestin Meacham posts on Protecting Hunting.

Virtual Mirage posts on South Korea - No more Mr. Nice Guy.

We the People... says they are purposely trying to bankrupt this nation.

Woman Honor Thyself posts on the Portland Bomb Plot.

Woodsterman shares with us the latest dose of Newsbusted.

YankeePhil posts on Howard Dean wanting to trash the first amendment.

Amusing Bunni posted Cute & Funny Kitteh Thanksgiving Videos. (BTW- Bunni's computer is in the shop and she will be back to blogging next week, so no need to worry)

Brian Darling of the Heritage Foundation on the state of Bush Tax Cuts

Monday, November 29, 2010

IRS Discriminating Against pro-Israel Groups?

A Pennsylvania group has made the claim that the Internal Revenue Service is targeting Pro-Israel groups. Well…. Could discrimination against Israel be possible? Well, let’s take a look at the Obama administration’s track record of their treatment (mistreatment?) of Israel and Israel’s Prime Minister. . Let’s take a look at some of this administration’s anti-Israel policies.

Nile Gardiner of The Telegraph points out Barack Obama’s top ten insults against Israel:
1. Obama’s humiliation of Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House
In March, the Israeli Prime Minister was humiliated by Barack Obama when he visited Washington. As The Telegraph reported, “Benjamin Netanyahu was left to stew in a White House meeting room for over an hour after President Barack Obama abruptly walked out of tense talks to have supper with his family”, after being presented with a list of 13 demands.

2. Engaging Iran when Tehran threatens a nuclear Holocaust against Israel
In contrast to its very public humiliation of close ally Israel, the Obama administration has gone out of its way to establish a better relationship with the genocidal regime of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, which continues to threaten Israel’s very existence. It has taken almost every opportunity to appease Tehran since it came to office, and has been extremely slow to respond to massive human rights violations by the Iranian regime, including the beating, rape and murder of pro-democracy protesters.

3. Drawing a parallel between Jewish suffering in the Holocaust with the current plight of the Palestinians
In his Cairo speech to the Muslim world, President Obama condemned Holocaust denial in the Middle East, but compared the murder of six million Jews during World War Two to the “occupation” of the Palestinian territories, in a disturbing example of moral equivalence:
“On the other hand, it is also undeniable that the Palestinian people – Muslims and Christians – have suffered in pursuit of a homeland. For more than sixty years they have endured the pain of dislocation. Many wait in refugee camps in the West Bank, Gaza, and neighboring lands for a life of peace and security that they have never been able to lead. They endure the daily humiliations – large and small – that come with occupation. So let there be no doubt: the situation for the Palestinian people is intolerable. America will not turn our backs on the legitimate Palestinian aspiration for dignity, opportunity, and a state of their own.”

4. Obama’s attack on Israeli “occupation” in his speech to the United Nations
In his appalling speech to the UN General Assembly last September, President Obama dedicated five paragraphs to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, without once referring directly to Palestinian terrorism by name, but declaring to loud applause “America does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements.” He also lambasted the Israeli “occupation”, and drew a connection between rocket attacks on Israeli civilians with living conditions in Gaza. The speech served as a ghastly PR exercise aimed at appeasing anti-Israel sentiment in the Middle East, while bashing the Israelis over the head.

5. Obama’s accusation that Israel is the cause of instability in the Middle East
As The Wall Street Journal noted, “the Obama Administration seems increasingly of the view that Israel is the primary cause of instability in the Middle East”, citing a recent press conference where he stated:
“It is a vital national security interest of the United States to reduce these conflicts because whether we like it or not, we remain a dominant military superpower, and when conflicts break out, one way or another we get pulled into them. And that ends up costing us significantly in terms of both blood and treasure.”

6. The Obama administration’s establishment of diplomatic relations with Syria
While actively appeasing Iran, the Obama administration has also sought to develop closer ties with the other main state sponsor of terrorism in the Middle East, Syria, establishing diplomatic relations with Damascus in February. Syria remains a major backer of Hamas and Hizbollah, both responsible for a large number of terrorist attacks against Israel.

7. Hillary Clinton’s 43-minute phone call berating Netanyahu
As The Telegraph reported, Hillary Clinton sought to dictate terms to Israel in the wake of Vice President Joe Biden’s visit to Jerusalem:
“In a telephone call, Hillary Clinton, the US secretary of state, ordered Mr. Netanyahu to reverse a decision to build 1,600 homes for Israeli settlers in occupied East Jerusalem that sparked the diplomatic row. She also instructed him to issue a formal pledge that peace talks would focus on core issues such as the future of Jerusalem and the borders of a Palestinian state. In addition, the Israeli prime minister was urged to make a substantial confidence-building gesture to the Palestinians. Mrs. Clinton suggested this could take the form of prisoner releases, an easing of the blockade of Gaza and the transfer of greater territory in the West Bank to Palestinian control.”
Last time I checked, Israel was still an independent country, and not a colonial dependency of the Obama White House. Yet that still hasn’t stopped the Secretary of State from acting like an imperial Viceroy.

8. David Axelrod’s attack on Israeli settlements on “Meet the Press”
It is extremely unusual for a White House official to launch an attack on a close US ally on live television, but this is exactly what the President’s Senior Adviser David Axelrod did in an interview in March with NBC’s Meet the Press, designed to cause maximum humiliation to Israel, where he stated in reference to new settlement construction in East Jerusalem:
“This was an affront, it was an insult but most importantly it undermined this very fragile effort to bring peace to that region. For this announcement to come at that time was very destructive.”

9. Hillary Clinton’s call on Israel to show “respect”
As The Telegraph revealed, the Secretary of State lectured the Israelis at a dinner attended by the Israeli ambassador and the ambassadors of several Arab states in mid-April, urging Israel to “refrain from unilateral statements” that could “undermine trust or risk prejudicing the outcome of talks”. In Clinton’s words:
“Prime Minister [Benjamin] Netanyahu has embraced the vision of the two-state solution. But easing up on access and movement in the West Bank, in response to credible Palestinian security performance, is not sufficient to prove to the Palestinians that this embrace is sincere. We encourage Israel to continue building momentum toward a comprehensive peace by demonstrating respect for the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinians, stopping settlement activity and addressing the humanitarian needs in Gaza.”

10. Robert Gibbs’ disparaging remarks about Israel
Not one to shy away from criticizing America’s friends when the opportunity arises, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs entered the fray in an interview on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace in March where he attacked the Israeli government for weakening “the trust that’s needed for both sides to come together and have honest discussions about peace in the Middle East.” In condescending terms he stated that Benjamin Netanyahu should start “coming to the table with constructive ideas for constructive and trustful dialogue about moving the peace process forward.”

It would seem that the Obama administration has indeed shown some anti-Israel tendencies. The Obama administration has consistently displayed antipathy toward Israel and other allies of the United States while being quite cordial and accommodating to those countries we both named and treated as our enemies prior to Barack Hussein Obama taking Office. So, with knowing this information do you think its possible that the Obama administration would use the IRS to marginalize, pretty much blackball, and maybe even blackmail those companies who support Israel?  Is the Obama IRS demanding that these organizations renounce their support of Israel in exchange for gaining or keeping their tax-exempt status?

As part of the IRS’s consideration of the organization’s tax exempt status IRS agent Tracy Dornette asked these two questions of Z Street: "Does your organization support the existence of the land of Israel?" and "Describe your organization's religious belief sytem toward the land of Israel."  Z Street claims that the IRS is "carefully scrutinizing organizations that are in any way connected with Israel" and that "a special unit" is determining whether its activities "contradict the Administration's public policies.'"

Ben Smith of The Politico points out that the “IRS can deny tax exempt status to groups that work against "established public policy," a precedent established in its denial of a tax exemption to Bob Jones University over racial discrimination, and Z Street is suggesting that the IRS has begun applying some such policy to pro-Israel groups.”

 Does the Obama administration’s "established public policy," consist of hostility to Israel, along with impeding both Israel’s right to exist and Israel's right to defend itself against its enemies?  It sure seems so. It is extremely scary when our President reverses sensible foreign policy initiatives with regards to both our closest allies and some of our most contentious and/or volatile enemies, destabilizes and causes tensions with our allies, while at the same time naively reaching out and negotiating with our enemies.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Black Friday Madness

Why is it these days people resort to engaging in violence all in the name of thrifty shopping?  This is NUTS!!!  Why is it impossible for some people to act in a civil manner when participating in bargain shopping, or trying to get those bargain deals? Is a toy or other value item really worth causing bodily harm to another individual?  Thank goodness I stayed away from the Black Friday madness.  I hope everyone else managed to stay safe and unharmed this Black Friday and continues to stay safe throughout this Christmas season.

And..... now the latest whacky Black Friday news filled with violence:

A marine valiantly stopped a suspected shoplifter and ended up getting stabbed by that same shoplifter.

There was a crazy pile up at Target:

A fight broke out and the Cerritos Food Court in L.A. was placed on lockdown after shots were heard.

Then, there was a woman who made threats to get a gun and shoot other shoppers who were standing, waiting in the same line as her.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Dang That Caterpillar Hair In My Eye!

It's been a crazy couple of days for me.  I had an eye issue, with my good eye - the one I can actually see with - so I was both concerned and scared.  I called the emergency line over the weekend and the nice doctor on call (different doc than mine) called me in some eye drops but the membrane around my eye kept on getting more irritated and progressively more painful as each day went by.  I have been to my Ophthalmologist's office twice in two days.  I hope the issue is taken care of. The first time my doc found a fiber in my eye.  Good - that's out of my eye now.   The second visit he found a caterpillar hair lodged in the corner of my eye which would also migrate to other places in the membrane causing pain.  Great news!!! I do believe that my doctor got everything out of my eye this time. This little bugger caused my eye to get scratched up.  Geeesh!!  My eye is feeling better now, thank goodness!   I am just glad that my great doctor found out what the problem was with my eye.  After looking at Wikipedia, apparently those little caterpillar hair buggers can cause tremendous damage when they enter your system depending on the type of caterpillar the hair came from which may coincide with what region you live in. 

From Wikipedia:

"Caterpillar hairs have also been known to cause kerato-conjunctivitis. The sharp barbs on the end of Caterpillar hairs can get lodged in soft tissues and mucus membranes such as the eyes. Once they enter such tissues, they can be difficult to extract, often exacerbating the problem as they migrate across the membrane.

This becomes a particular problem in an indoor setting. The hairs easily enter buildings through ventilation systems and accumulate in indoor environments because their small size, which makes it difficult for them to be vented out. This accumulation increases the risk of human contact in indoor environments."

This type mentioned above is what I had.

But, depending on the type of caterpillar hair it has the capacity to cause alot of damage to your body:

"Caterpillar hair has been known to be a cause of human health problems. Caterpillar hairs sometimes have venoms in them and species from approximately 12 families of moths or butterflies worldwide can inflict serious human injuries ranging from urticarial dermatitis and atopic asthma to osteochondritis, consumption coagulopathy, renal failure, and intracerebral hemorrhage.[22] Skin rashes are the most common, but there have been fatalities.[23] Lonomia is a frequent cause of death in Brazil with 354 cases were reported between 1989 and 2005. Lethality ranging up to 20% with death caused most often by intracranial hemorrhage."

Who would have thought something so tiny could cause so much bodily damage?  

Monday, November 22, 2010

Yes Rep. Issa, Please, by All Means Dig, Dig, Dig

This New York Times article asks whether Rep. Darrell Issa and the GOP will be digging or investigating a long laundry list of violations that the Obama admin has committed over the last two years.  I can almost guarantee that Rep. Issa and the GOP will be investigating away.  YEA!! The N.Y. Times columnist Brian Friel makes an educated guess as to which issues he thinks that Darrell Issa and the GOP will be investigating after they takeover the reigns in January.  Friel even goes onto mention some additional issues which he thinks should be investigated as well. 

Here is the list:

White House job offers. The question is whether the administration offered plum positions to get two Senate primary challengers — Joe Sestak in Pennsylvania and Andrew Romanoff in Colorado — to drop their bids against Democratic incumbents. While the White House insists and most legal experts agree that no law was broken, Mr. Issa has said that that Americans could have “confidence in the legitimacy of the conclusions drawn” by the administration in the cases only if they have access to all related documents.

“Friends of Angelo.” Several prominent Democrats, including two senators, Kent Conrad of North Dakota and Chris Dodd of Connecticut (who chose not to run for re-election this month), were found to have received sweetheart mortgage rates from Countrywide Financial and its former chief executive, Angelo Mozilo. While the Senate Ethics Committee found “no substantial credible evidence” that the two senators had violated ethics rules, Mr. Issa says more investigation is warranted into whether other government officials got such deals.

Acorn. The liberal nonprofit group dissolved last year in the glare of conservative scrutiny, but some Republicans want an investigation into Acorn’s federal financing for its housing programs, which amounted to at least $53 million since 1994.

New Black Panthers. Last year the Justice Department convened and then dropped an investigation into whether members of the New Black Panther Party intimidated voters at a polling place in Philadelphia in 2008. Many conservatives feel the case was concluded prematurely and would like the Justice Department to take it up again.

Climate science. Conservatives who question the consensus that climate change is manmade want to use various committees’ oversight powers to challenge its scientific underpinnings, many of which were reached by federally financed researchers. Mr. Issa has focused on the so-called Climategate scandal involving alleged manipulation of data by British scientists: “For me, settled science starts out with settled raw data,” Mr. Issa said. “If the raw data’s in doubt, then the idea that we have settled science doesn’t exist. I want settled science.”

BP oil-spill response. Republicans may want to emphasize the White House’s missteps in dealing with the Gulf oil spill in April. In July, Mr. Issa said that the administration’s “preoccupation with public relations” might have hindered local officials’ efforts to deal with the disaster.

Economic stimulus. Representative Issa created a Web site where people can post pictures of road signs touting projects financed by the $787 billion economic stimulus package; he says the signs are little more than expensive propaganda, costing taxpayers $192 million. Mr. Issa will no doubt find additional creative ways to raise doubts about the administration’s response to the Great Recession, which he says has wasted money on swimming pools, zoos and golf courses.

Czars. Mr. Issa wants to give special scrutiny to unconfirmed presidential advisers including Elizabeth Warren, who is setting up the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and Carol Browner, who oversees environmental policy. Such czars are a sign of the “arrogance of government,” Mr. Issa says, because their appointments avoid Congress’s constitutional advise-and-consent role.


Federal contracts. Agencies paid private contractors at least $539 billion in fiscal 2009, much of it with little or no competition or performance evaluation. An additional $660 billion-plus in grants to states, local governments and nonprofits has undergone no systemic Congressional review. The committee should look into possible waste and whether contracting rules were followed.

The Civil Service. As with contractors, Congress has not systemically reviewed the performance and efficiency of the government’s 1.8 million-member work force.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. At $136 billion so far, the federal takeover of the quasi-private housing corporations is the most expensive component of the government’s response to the economic crisis. Figuring out the government’s role in the housing market going forward is essential after decades of Congressional neglect.

Defense spending. Congress has been loath to dig too deeply into waste in the Pentagon budget, in part because every state and Congressional district benefits from the spending. But 8 of the 31 agencies on the Government Accountability Office high-risk list of programs “vulnerable to fraud, waste, abuse and mismanagement” are run out of the Defense Department. Certainly Congress should scrutinize them.

Food safety. A series of recalls, including that of half a billion eggs last summer in a salmonella outbreak, has highlighted the strains on the Food and Drug Administration. Congress should investigate whether it needs to be reformed or its duties taken up by other agencies.

Transparency. The government keeps too much information secret, operating a costly system of classification. Much of the information it does make public is impossible for most citizens to comprehend. Republicans could push agencies to declassify more information more quickly and draft legislation to compel the bureaucracy to release data in more usable formats.

Veterans health. Since the exposure of terrible conditions at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in 2007, Congress has dumped billions into the veterans health system. But there has been little follow-up to examine the quality of care and the cost-effectiveness of efforts by the Department of Veterans Affairs and other agencies.

Loan guarantees. Congress has backed more than $100 billion in loans in energy-related private projects. Because the guarantees don’t cost much up front, they tend to get little scrutiny. But the taxpayers are on the hook for any projects that go bust, and Congress should scrutinize them more carefully to determine the risk of failure and whether the projects truly deserve our backing.

Agency performance. Do taxpayers get what they pay for? In 1993, Congress passed the Government Performance and Results Act, requiring federal agencies to report each year on how well they were meeting goals, like whether the Internal Revenue Service is collecting all taxes due or whether the Education Department is improving student achievement. Agencies still produce those reports, but everyone involved knows that nobody really reads them. Oversight committees should start using them the way shareholders use companies’ annual reports: to see if their investments are paying off.

Congress itself. Committees in general do little sustained oversight, instead chasing headlines. And they operate with significant overlap — more than 100 committees and subcommittees oversee the Homeland Security Department, for example. The committees offer few channels for public input and participation. As one expert says, “I’d like to see Congress take a hard look at how it does oversight before it does any more of it.”

I am looking forward to seeing Rep. Darrell Issa dig, dig, dig, and the deeper the better.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Holes in the Condom Debate: What the Pope Really Said

When The L’Osservatore Romano breached an embargo yesterday and decided to go full steam ahead with the release of some partial excerpts of Pope Benedict’s new book, Light of the World: The Pope, The Church and The Signs Of The Times, the media went all a frenzy over comments the Pope made pertaining to the use of condoms.

Needless to say, before his new book has even hit the shelves it has stirred much controversy all across the media. Did the media get “it” right this time? Is this a BIG DEAL or much ado about nothing? Is this Pope Benedict’s personal opinion? If it is his personal opinion, does it depart from Church Teaching? I have read articles from various media sources across the internet including that of both Jimmy Akin and Dr. Janet Smith. Both Akin and Smith have posted very well written articles on the matter and both clarify the pontiffs statements. The media has twisted the Pope’s words (which isn’t that surprising) to fit their own cause of remaking a long held principle of the catholic Church, claiming that the Pope said that the use condoms can be justified in some cases. That is not what he said.

First, I would like to point out that this is an interview book and this is not a Church encyclical or anything of the sort. Second, the Pope can have private opinions which may be wrong, and he even points this out in his book. Jimmy Akin emphasizes that The L’Osservatore Romano did a major disservice to all the public, Catholic or not, by releasing excerpts which fail to show the entire context of Pope Benedict’s statements.

Here is text from the Pope’s book:

Seewald: . . . In Africa you stated that the Church’s traditional teaching has proven to be the only sure way to stop the spread of HIV. Critics, including critics from the Church’s own ranks, object that it is madness to forbid a high-risk population to use condoms.

Benedict: . . . In my remarks I was not making a general statement about the condom issue, but merely said, and this is what caused such great offense, that we cannot solve the problem by distributing condoms. [EMPHASIS ADDED] Much more needs to be done. We must stand close to the people, we must guide and help them; and we must do this both before and after they contract the disease. As a matter of fact, you know, people can get condoms when they want them anyway. But this just goes to show that condoms alone do not resolve the question itself. More needs to happen. Meanwhile, the secular realm itself has developed the so-called ABC Theory: Abstinence-Be Faithful-Condom, where the condom is understood only as a last resort, when the other two points fail to work. This means that the sheer fixation on the condom implies a banalization of sexuality, which, after all, is precisely the dangerous source of the attitude of no longer seeing sexuality as the expression of love, but only a sort of drug that people administer to themselves. This is why the fight against the banalization of sexuality is also a part of the struggle to ensure that sexuality is treated as a positive value and to enable it to have a positive effect on the whole of man’s being.

Jimmy Akin points out that the Pope’s overall argument is that condoms will not solve the problem of AIDS. Akin reiterates this:

1) People can already get condoms, yet it clearly hasn’t solved the problem.

2) The secular realm has proposed the ABC program, where a condom is used only if the first two, truly effective procedures (abstinence and fidelity) have been rejected. Thus even the secular ABC proposal recognizes that condoms are not the unique solution. They don’t work as well as abstinence and fidelity. The first two are better.

3) The fixation on condom use represents a banalization (trivialization) of sexuality that turns the act from being one of love to one of selfishness. For sex to have the positive role it is meant to play, this trivialization of sex—and thus the fixation on condoms—needs to be resisted.

Here is the statement which the media devoured and seized upon:

There may be a basis in the case of some individuals, as perhaps when a male prostitute uses a condom, where this can be a first step in the direction of a moralization, a first assumption of responsibility, on the way toward recovering an awareness that not everything is allowed and that one cannot do whatever one wants. But it is not really the way to deal with the evil of HIV infection. That can really lie only in a humanization of sexuality. (EMPHASIS ADDED)

Jimmy Akin points out that Pope Benedict says “may” and not “is”. Then, Pope Benedict goes on to reiterate that “it is not really the way to deal with the evil of HIV infection. That can really lie only in a humanization of sexuality.”

Janet Smith has posted excerpts from the Pope’s book. I am posting some of those excerpts below.

 The Pope stands by his “controversial” remarks that he previously stated on the use of condoms to prevent AIDS: “that we cannot solve the problem by distributing condoms. Much more needs to be done. We must stand close to the people, we must guide and help them; and we must do this both before and after they contract the disease.”

Pope Benedict stated: “I had the chance to visit one of these wards and to speak with the patients. That was the real answer: The Church does more than anyone else, because she does not speak from the tribunal of the newspapers, but helps her brothers and sisters where they are actually suffering. In my remarks I was not making a general statement about the condom issue, but merely said, and this is what caused such great offense, that we cannot solve the problem by distributing condoms. Much more needs to be done. We must stand close to the people, we must guide and help them; and we must do this both before and after they contract the disease.”

Pope Benedict is correct in stating that condoms will not solve the problem of AIDS. Condoms lessen, but do not eliminate, the risk of transmitting HIV, thus they do not make sex truly safe. 
I encourage you to take a look over at The American Catholic where lively chatter has been going on covering the latest controversy.

An interview with the Pope does not change the teachings of the Catholic Church regarding condoms or otherwise.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Friday, November 19, 2010

'127 Hours' -- Movie Takes Intense Look at Man's Quest for Survival

From Freep.com: Others heard the story of rock climber Aron Ralston's days-long ordeal -- he was trapped by a boulder that pinned down his arm -- and winced. Danny Boyle saw a tale of endurance and triumph, a spiritual journey in which a young man comes to terms with the expression "No man is an island."

"127 Hours" is the remarkable film the director of "Slumdog Millionaire" and his "Slumdog" screenwriter (Simon Beaufoy) conjured out of that excruciating tale. It's a tribute to Boyle's filmic flair and the humanity he wears on his sleeve that we can recall how Ralston's 127-hour saga ends and still be stunned and moved by the finale.

James Franco carries this gorgeous picture, giving us a Ralston who's a grinning extreme sports cliché. He works in a mountaineering equipment shop and takes off on solo weekend trips, hurtling across buttes on his mountain bike, exulting in nature and even in the spills he takes along the way. The film's opening minutes, with Ralston narrating his gonzo adventures on his camcorder, show us just how long it takes him to get to the middle of nowhere and how psyched he is to arrive.

On the day of his accident, he stumbles into a couple of cute hikers (Kate Mara and Amber Tamblyn) and disarmingly offers to show them the Blue John Canyon that only he knows. Ralston's open-faced grin advertises a big heart, and Franco effortlessly conveys the guy's innocence and lust for life.

The girls move on after an adventurous side trip (videotaped) to a water hole and after Aron has promised to come to their party later. Then he dashes out of sight. By the time he takes his big tumble, there is nobody within miles. He's going to miss that party.

Boyle and Beaufoy are fascinated by the kid's reaction to his plight. He has taken one calculated risk too many, but he's self-reliant and has all sorts of things in his pack that might help. None do. But he doesn't panic. He even keeps his camcorder diary up to date as he tries this and that, makes sure to hydrate and rests between attempts at self-rescue. He bundles up as best he can overnight and marvels at the way the light at sunrise plays down into the crack where he's stuck. Here's a guy who lives every day as if it might be his last.

But in dreams, flashbacks and hallucinations, Aron remembers the girl (Clemence Poesy) he wouldn't commit to and the mistakes he made with his parents and others. He ponders how his decisions are reflected in what has happened to him. He's a lone wolf who lives for himself, and nobody knows where he is or that he's missing.

Boyle, Beaufoy, Franco and cinematographer Anthony Dod Mantle have created a film of breathtaking scenery, awe-inspiring silences and a perilous puzzle. Is this "Into the Wild," where only a trace of Aron will ever be found, or will he find a solution? And will we want to watch it?

It's a tribute to everyone involved that this Man vs. His Wild Self drama remains utterly absorbing and thrilling until the end.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Socialism: Hand in Hand with Mob Violence

Here is an article on Socialism and Mob Violence by Joel McDurmon:

It seems to be little more than casual news these days when riots break out in Athens, Paris, London, or some other socialist haven. Greeks riot over austerity; we huff. Francs mob over retirement age; we chuckle. Most recently, London students riot over the threat of higher tuition; we snore. We snore right through the glass breaking and all.

It just seems commonplace to us, I guess, that Europe is a Continent of adolescent children who throw things and break stuff, writhing in tantrum, when they don’t get their way. And they have a common phrase over there, “Crazy Americans.” We could reciprocate, but choose to ignore.

What no one seems yet to have pointed out in all the recent news reports is the obvious: socialism itself is by definition mob rule. It is the most powerful organized and collected interests in society leveraging government force to sate their lusts. To do so they extract wealth from other members of society, divvy the loot amongst themselves (the pirate image is too mild—it is more like hyenas over a carcass), and stuff their gullets.

Socialism is the political embodiment of plunder. It is the denial of the rule of law, or private property, individual liberty, and therefore of Christianity.

This system of governmental piracy unleashes at least two important aspects: the lusts of the mob, and the police-power of the mob.

The lusts of the mob manifest the depravity of man: rebellion against maturity, responsibility and honesty. The curse of the fall—the thorns and sweat—are, consciously or not, assumed to be overcome not through godly ethics, but through political policy. That is, through man’s legislative fiat, not God’s—man’s law-order, not God’s. By passing a law limiting work hours, price controls, wage rates, etc., the mob proclaims itself free of the need to work, build, plan, save, sacrifice, etc. This is fallen man’s futile proclamation that he is free, and free indeed. It is futile and blind—blind to the fact that this alleged freedom must be imposed by force of government. “Free at gunpoint.”

But someone has to pay the bills. So the rich get soaked; then they quit producing as much as they would in a free market; then general productivity declines; then national living standards decline; then the State prints and borrows to maintain its promises; then the debts start to get called. Someone has to pay those bills. You can’t just legislate them away indefinitely.

Eventually, someone, somewhere, must sacrifice, work hard, and produce. And those unnecessarily receiving an unnecessarily generous dole must take some cuts.

This means “austerity.” But austerity means backlash from the lustfully entitled mob. The conversation goes like this:

“We need cuts.”

“Yes we do.”

“Who will take the cuts?”

“Not me. You take the cut.”

“No, not me. You take the cut.”


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Beck Is Right About Soros

Those of you deniers of reality, deniers of the truth about George Soros' Nazi connections need to read the transcript of the 60 minutes interview and see that the admission which was made during the interview on 60 minutes, came straight from the horse's mouth.  Glenn Beck repeated the widely known story concerning Soros' involvement in handing deportation orders to Jewish families on behalf of the Nazis.  Glenn Beck is even so charitable as to say that: 'Soros was only fourteen at the time and does not condemn the activity, asserting that the matter remains "between Soros and God." '  J.R. Dunn of The American Thinker points out that Glenn Beck's treatment of Soros and the narrative is commendable and "in particular his statement that no one has a right to judge the efforts of Jews to survive in Nazi-occupied Europe."

J.R. Dunn goes onto describe the liberals denial of reality (gee, who could imagine - a lib avoiding reality) and points out three major objections made by them:

•1) The incident never happened.

•2) Its import and meaning are quite different that what is implied.

•3) Beck is throwing around Nazi associations in much the same way that the left do when they assert (one example out of thousands), that Prescott Bush "assisted the Nazis."

J.R. Dunn continues:

As to the import of the episode -- many of the comments draw very close to Holocaust denial. How do we know, they ask, that the Jews in question were being sent to the death camps? They could have been going anywhere -- "to Hawaii," one thoughtful commentator states.

This is a standard trope of the Holocaust-denial industry. "Revisionists," as they fancy themselves, have given up complete denial of the exterminations in favor of minimizing Nazi crimes by shaving away at the margins. So we get claims that not all the victims died in Auschwitz, Treblinka, Belzec, and the other camps, but instead were "sent" somewhere -- nobody knows quite where. In the 1980s, one insightful little scholar suggested that a large proportion of the missing six million could be found in Israeli retirement homes. The odious David Irving, a legitimate historian who slid into denial for reasons unknown even to himself, blithely insisted that he had "no idea" what happened to the European Jews, even though he had access to the largest private archive of Nazi documentation ever assembled.

The truth is simple: every Jew deported from the European ghettos went directly to the camps. Most of them were gassed immediately and then -- as the survivors put it -- went up the chimneys. There is no denying this, or eliding it, or making it mean anything else other than what it is. Holocaust denial is a crime. Anyone denying the exterminations is engaging in criminal activity -- particularly if it involves, as it does here, an attempt to silence a political opponent.

On to the claim that Beck is slandering Soros as a Nazi. This type of smear is not uncommon, and it is usually seen headed from the left in a rightward direction, under the assumption that both conservatism and Nazism are "right-wing" doctrines. The Prescott Bush libel is instructive here. Apparently the bank on whose board Bush sat loaned money to Nazi Germany during the 1930s. This is enough for him, his son, and his grandson to be damned from here to eternity as Nazi collaborators of the foulest type, according to the American left.

In truth, Bush was in no way involved in the day-to-day operations of the bank. He may not have been aware of the loans, he may not have voted on them, and he may well not have been asked his opinion. Many international banks loaned money to Germany during that period. We can judge none of them by hindsight. In the early to mid-'30s, Hitler was considered a strongman much like Mussolini or Ataturk, a man whose stern policies and harsh ways were required by the needs of the moment. His attacks on Jews were dismissed as crowd-pleasing rhetoric. Such lofty figures as Franklin D. Roosevelt, Rexford Tugwell, Adolf Berle, Evelyn Waugh, and Wyndham Lewis all expressed admiration for Hitler and Nazism in the early 1930s. Even Winston Churchill, Hitler's deadliest enemy, wrote that if Britain was ever caught in the same predicament as Germany, he hoped that a figure as strong as Hitler would appear to lead her out of it.

That attitude began to fade with Hitler's intervention in Spain in 1936, and it vanished entirely when 1938's Kristallnacht fully revealed his monstrous intentions. Hitler's previous admirers turned away in horror, leaving only mad, capering Ezra Pound to sing his glories.

That's how such slurs work -- a nugget of fact wrapped in endless layers of distortion and innuendo. That is not what Beck is involved in. As we've seen, he retails the story straightforwardly, with no embellishment or speculation. He withholds judgment on grounds of moral discretion and implicitly encourages others to do the same.

Then why mention the story at all? Because it's necessary. An honest portrayal of George Soros would be incomplete without it. There's an aspect of Soros' behavior that has gone unexamined and virtually unmentioned: the complete disconnect between his activities as a businessman and his ambitions as a philanthropist. Soros has, at the very least, skirted financial regulations in most or all of the countries in which he has operated. He has done worse in France, Malaysia, and Thailand -- the French fined him millions, while the Southeast Asian states are reportedly very interested in speaking to him in private. He has caused enormous misery through his currency manipulations. He evidently feels no guilt concerning these matters, either.

Yet this same man professes to be the greatest living champion of the "open society," the bearer of the legacy of Karl Popper (one of the few liberty-loving political philosophers of the last century), and the architect of a true people's democracy, working together with his protégé, Barack Obama.

There's something terribly wrong here. This is not the way a benefactor of humanity actually behaves. It's as if Gandhi financed his independence movement through a network of casinos, or if Martin Luther King sat on the councils of Murder Incorporated. What can the explanation be?

I believe that it can be found in Budapest in 1944. The Holocaust left deep and lasting scars on all who survived it, scars that often acted to cripple their psyches for decades afterward, if not for their entire lifetimes. It's highly unlikely that George Soros is an exception. Did the brutalization of those days find a response in buccaneer raids on the financial markets? Did the memories of what he was forced to do transform him into one of those creatures who "loves humanity and hates human beings"? Is he now little more than a shattered clockwork figure attempting in his twilight years to "do good" without the vaguest notion of what such a concept might entail?

I think the argument could be made. I await Glenn Beck's interpretation with interest. One thing we can be sure of: the left will not be any happier about it than they are with what they've already heard.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Debate: Is Big Government Stifling the American Spirit?

While surfing the televison channels a couple of weeks ago I found these very interesting debates on Bloomberg called Intelligence Squared Debates.  This weeek I watched a very interesting debate where the question being raised was:  Is government intervention in everything from economic policy to health care rewarding the “takers,” and not the “makers,” stifling innovators, entrepreneurs and business owners? Or has government done too little to support the growing poor and rapidly shrinking middle class? The motion being set forth stated that big government is stifling the American spirit.

Phil Gramm and Arthur Laffer supported the motion which stated that Big Government is stifling the American spirit while Nouriel Roubini and Laura Tyson were against the motion.  The debate is about 1 hour and 45 minutes but well worth your watching it.  I suggest that you grab a snack and a beverage, sit back, and enjoy watching a most interesting debate.   

Here is the debate:


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Playing Video Game Tetris Reduces Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Flashbacks

The game of Tetris has been shown to have some medicinal value.  Tetris is good for easing the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder.  This challenging mind-bending block-maneuvering game actually reduces the number of flashbacks of those people who have post-traumatic stress disorder.  

Here is a graph which shows that people who played Tetris after seeing a traumatic film had fewer flashbacks a week later.

From the Guardian: The research, which was conducted at the department of psychiatry at the University of Oxford, suggests using Tetris as a "cognitive vaccine" against flashbacks from traumatic events. It's published on the open-source science research Public Library of Science (PLoS) website.

Here's how they set out their recommendations:

The rationale for a 'cognitive vaccine' approach is as follows: Trauma flashbacks are sensory-perceptual, visuospatial mental images. Visuospatial cognitive tasks selectively compete for resources required to generate mental images. Thus, a visuospatial computer game (e.g. "Tetris") will interfere with flashbacks. Visuospatial tasks post-trauma, performed within the time window for memory consolidation, will reduce subsequent flashbacks. We predicted that playing "Tetris" half an hour after viewing trauma would reduce flashback frequency over 1-week.

In other words, if you're looking at falling squares, lines, hoooks and whatever those twiddly ones that are two overlapping lines of two are called, then you don't have time to visualise your previous bad experiences.

I'm glad I wasn't asked to take part:

Forty participants watched a 12-min film of traumatic scenes of injury and death (n = 20 per group). Film viewing was followed by a 30-min interval before simple random assignment to one of two experimental conditions. There were no baseline differences between the two groups in terms of age, depressive symptoms or trait anxiety or gender. Mood was equivalent between the groups prior to watching the film, and as predicted, both groups experienced comparable mood deterioration following the film (emphasis added).

(Tell me about it. Someone at work was looking for gruesome scenes from ER involving helicopters and instead found a real-life one. I'm recommending Tetris to him.)

Afterwards, one group just sat quietly, and another played Tetris, for ten minutes. They then kept a diary about flashbacks they'd had; this showed that the group which had played Tetris had significantly fewer (with a probability that it was chance less than 1%).

It's a remarkable finding; though looking at the long list of references, the idea of visual "distraction" as a method of desensitising people from visual memories has been around since at least early this decade.

But who'd have thought we'd find a potentially workable cure in a game that for a while 20 years ago seemed like a Russian plot to turn all our population into obsessive cursor-button pokers? (Wait, did it work?)

So maybe that's going to be the new treatment for returning soldiers from the front: Nintendo Gameboys loaded with Tetris.

This is a really great medical breakthrough!!!  I hope that this type of therapy expands and helps as many people as possible who are dealing with trautic-stress disorder today.  Hooray for medical innovation!!!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Violence and Racism Revealed at the 'Restoring Sanity' Rally

The Left consistently tries to portray Tea Party members as a bunch of violent racists yet there has been no evidence backing up their false allegations.  Here is proof of liberals acting out with violence, being racist, and expressing rage.

Here is Steven Crowder revealing violence at the 'Restoring Sanity' rally.

Racism and rage revealed in this video:

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Muslim "Tolerance" in Pakistan -- Christian woman sentenced to death for "blasphemy"

From Jihad Watch: Apparently all she did was confess the Christian faith. Islamic Tolerance Alert: "Punjab: Christian woman sentenced to death for blasphemy," from Asia News, November 9 (thanks to C. Cantoni):

Islamabad (AsiaNews/Agencies) - Pakistan has "crossed a line" in sentencing a Christian woman to death for blasphemy. Asia Bibi, a 37-year-old farm worker mother of two, was convicted of committing blasphemy before her fellow workers during a heated discussion about religion in the village of Ittanwali in June last year.

Some of the women workers had reportedly been pressuring Bibi to renounce her Christian faith and accept Islam. During one discussion, Bibi responded by speaking of how Jesus had died on the cross for the sins of humanity and asking the Muslim women what Muhammad had done for them.

The Muslim women took offence and began beating Bibi. Afterwards she was locked in a room. According to Release International, a mob reportedly formed and "violently abused" her and her children.

The charity, which supports persecuted Christians, said that blasphemy charges were brought against Bibi because of pressure from local Muslim leaders....

In addition to the death sentence, Bibi was also fined the equivalent for an unskilled worker of two and a half years' wages.

Another Christian woman, Martha Bibi (no relation to Asia), is also on trial in Lahore for blasphemy.

According to the National Commission on Justice and Peace (NCJP) of the Catholic Church, between 1986 and August 2009, at least 974 people have been charged for defiling the Qur'an or insulting the Prophet Muhammad. They include 479 Muslims, 340 Ahmadis, 119 Christians, 14 Hindus and 10 from other religions....

Now, oh where oh where have all those human rights organizations gone?  These organizations stay silent as Christians suffer and are persecuted at the hands of Muslims.  It is truly incomprenhensible how the human rights organizations haven't stood up against the brutality of Christian women.

Monday, November 8, 2010

A Common Sense Global Warming Believer Brings us "Cool It"

First off I don't believe that man-made global warming exists because I haven't seen any empirical or indisputable evidence which proves it. But, let's say that the globe is warming not because of man but for some other reason, maybe we should look into why and fix it, if it really does need to be fixed.  Here is an article by a common sense man-made global warming believer (not an alarmist Al Gore type) which I found interesting even though I disagree with his premise that man-made global warming exists.

By Bjorn Lomborg: For nearly two decades now, people have been arguing about climate change and getting nowhere. Right-wingers argue that global warming is a hoax based on unsubstantiated science, while left-wingers insist that not only is it real but unless we spend everything we have and more trying to stop it, the world will end tomorrow.

To which I say, “Stop—you’re both wrong!”

This, in a nutshell, is the message of the new documentary about me and my work that opens nationwide on Nov. 12. It’s called “Cool It” and, yes, the title is meant to be clever. The idea is that we do need to cool down the planet, but in order to do it sensibly we first need to cool it ourselves. That is, we need to dispense with both the anti-scientific denialism and the Al Gore-ish fear-mongering. Instead, what we should be doing is facing facts—and responding to them not with rhetoric but with smarter, more rational policies.

The first fact we need to acknowledge is the reality of global warming. Like it or not, the data is abundantly clear that man-made greenhouse gases have been building up in the atmosphere for decades if not centuries, with the result that global temperatures are rising. Yes, the “Climate-gate” emails and the disclosure of funny business at the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change exposed some deeply disturbing academic chicanery and prejudice at some supposedly prestigious institutions. However, these revelations did nothing to undermine the fundamental scientific basis of global warming. What they did call into question were many of the more extreme predictions about global warming’s likely impact—such as the idea that all the Himalayan glaciers were about to disappear (they’re not) or that half the Amazon rain forest would soon be destroyed (not likely).

Of course, these extreme predictions are at the heart of the mainstream environmental movement’s position on climate policy. And this brings us to another set of facts we need to face: that while global warming is real, it is not quite the imminent catastrophe so many climate activists would have us believe. There may be some truth to the notion that in order to get people to focus on a problem, you need to scare the pants off them. But while worst-case scenarios may be a great way to get the public’s attention, they are a terrible basis for making public policy. If you believe that the southwest U.S. is about to become another dustbowl (as Paul Krugman has insisted) or that Greenland and Antarctica are on the verge of becoming huge piles of slush (as Al Gore would have us believe), of course you’re going to argue that we should do everything we can to eliminate carbon emissions as quickly as possible—even if that means amazingly costly and ineffective government policies.

And make no mistake about it—the kind of carbon cuts called for in the Kyoto Protocols and the European Union’s recently adopted 20/20 policy (under which carbon emissions are supposed to be cut to 20% below 1990 levels by 2020) are hardly a recipe for success. Not only would they rob us of trillions of dollars worth of economic output—the EU effort alone would cost an estimated $250 billion a year in lost GDP—but they would do astonishingly little to solve global warming. According to the DICE climate-economic model, if the EU plan were to be implemented every year for the next 90 years, the resulting reduction in temperatures would be too small to measure. (To be precise, the figure is a miniscule 0.1 degrees Fahrenheit.)

The good news is that there is another, better way to deal with global warming—a cure that is most assuredly not worse than the disease. As I have noted elsewhere, the big problem with the Al Gore approach to global warming is that it ignores the fact that despite all the hopeful talk about solar, wind, and other green energy technologies, we are still overwhelmingly dependent for our energy needs on carbon-emitting fuels like coal and oil. Why? Because coal and oil are far cheaper and more efficient energy sources than the alternatives. For two decades now, we have been putting the cart before the horse, pretending we could cut carbon emissions now (by taxing them) and solve the efficiency problem later. Unfortunately, this makes neither economic nor political sense. What we should be doing isn’t trying to make carbon-emitting fuels too expensive to use, but rather figuring out how to make green energy cheaper. If we could do that, we wouldn’t have to force (or subsidize) anyone to stop burning coal and oil. Everyone, including the Chinese and the Indians, would shift to the cheaper and cleaner alternatives.

This of course is a big if. But it’s not impossible. As the Breakthrough Institute has pointed out, we didn’t promote the digital revolution by taxing slide rules or restricting the supply of typewriters. We did it by investing massively in R&D. We could—and should—do the same with green energy technology. As we point out in “Cool It,” devoting roughly $100 billion a year to green energy R&D would likely produce the kind of game-changing breakthroughs needed to fuel a carbon-free future. Not only would this be a much less expensive fix than trying to cut carbon emissions directly, it would also reduce global warming far more quickly.

So why aren’t we doing this? I blame polarization. What’s keeping us from getting anywhere is the lack of any middle ground in the climate debate. As far as the alarmists are concerned, you either believe global warming poses an imminent threat to our continued existence or you are a denier. Deniers can be just as bad: in their view, if you don’t believe global warming is a nefarious hoax, you must be an empty-headed “warmist.” It’s time to retire the old shibboleths of both left and right—and stop branding anyone who dares question them a crackpot or worse.

Tackling global warming smartly is not (or at least it shouldn’t be) a political issue. Being smart is something we ought to be able to find bipartisan agreement on. For the politically conservative, the attraction of this approach is that it is a clear-headed, fiscally responsible response – and one that would actually fix the problem it is meant to solve.

H/T Breitbart

Saturday, November 6, 2010

A Plan to Inoculate the Contagious Infection Obamacare

David Catron from The American Spectator has an excellent plan on how to inoculate the contagious infection - Obamacare -  from spreading more than it has infected our lives already.  Did you know before there was RomneyCare in Mass. that there was DukakisCare? Thankfully the GOP halted that by defunding the DukakisCare "reform" debacle.  Hopefully we can do the same with Obamacare.  Rep. John Boehner made the most magnanimous pledge on repealing and replacing the health care law during his interview with Bret Baier saying, 'I'll make sure Obamacare is never implemented'. This is wonderful! He also hinted that he and the newly elected Republican majority in Congress has "a lot of tricks up our sleeves" to follow through on that promise.  You go Boehner!!  Inoculate Obamacare!!