Cal Thomas on South Dakota Pro-Life Legislation

02/28/2006: Cal Thomas, a veteran of the pro-life cause, reflects my sentiments on the recent efforts by the South Dakota legislature to outlaw abortion almost across-the-board. This is the mother of all crapshoots and it almost certainly will fail.

I’ve seen some gallant efforts over the past 20 years.

Idaho tried outlawing abortion except for cases of rape, incest, and danger to the woman’s life in 1990. This made it through the house and senate, and was vetoed by the governor.

Louisiana tried similar legislation, which was vetoed by the governor.

Pennsylvania attempted legislation that involved parental and spousal notification. When it was challenged in the court system, the Supreme Court upheld Roe while approving of some provisions of the Pennsylvania law.

I agree with Cal on this one: addressing the issue of abortion will require a multi-pronged approach. The most important of which is involvement in the non-legislative arena. Crisis pregnancy centers and maternity homes are a very integral part of a non-legislative strategy.

During my experience as a counselor–at what was then Alpha Crisis Pregnancy Center in Anderson, Indiana–one of our frustrations was the limited number of pro-life medical professionals offering their services, and local churches that provided support. In the same city that boasted a major Christian university, the headquarters of a major Christian denomination, three very large evangelical congregations (North Anderson Church of God, East Side Church of God, and Park Place Church of God), and was home to several Christian contemporary artists, support for the local maternity home and crisis pregnancy center was scant at best.

That is not to say that the resolution of the abortion issue is irrespective of legislation; at some point, legislation is necessary. However, the time has not come. Even if the South Dakota legislation makes it to the Supreme Court, it will get shot down by at least a 5-4 ruling. (Breyer, Kennedy, Ginsberg, Stevens, and Souter are solidly pro-Roe, while Alito and Roberts are untested on the matter and are by no means guaranteed pro-life votes. Hypothetically, this could end up 7-2 against the pro-life cause.)

Some may read this and say, “Oh SingleMind, you have no faith!” I have faith in God. I have no faith in humanity. I’ve seen time after time in which SCOTUS has had the opportunity to do the right thing, and they have failed most of the time.

Color me skeptical, but I think the South Dakotans are swinging at windmills.

Like Cal Thomas, I hope it flies.

Like Cal Thomas, I have my doubts on this one.

Poor Kitty Gets Bird Flu :(

02/28/2006: Rut roh. A cat–testing positive for H5N1 (bird flu) has been found dead.

I’m not surprised that cats are turning up with the bird flu: other than birds, people and animals that have direct contact with the birds have shown to be succeptible to the bird flu. Since cats are predators of birds, any unsuspecting kitty would be doomed, as nine lives would not be enough.

My cat–Sneaky–has been an indoor cat for the nearly five years that I’ve had her.

Sowell: Something for Nothing?

02/28/2006: We’re all supposed to know that we cannot get something for nothing. However, that has not stopped voters from demanding such from politicians, and–likewise–it has not stopped politicians from promising such to gullible voters.

For 70 years, we’ve been buying that lie. Sowell–in his latest column–provides insights into how people buy into that illusion and how it fails.

Another Hero from “Greatest Generation” Dies

02/27/2006: Brigadier General Robert L. Scott (USAF, Ret.), a World War II ace pilot who shot down 22 Japanese “Zeroes”, has died. He was 97.

Every year, the ranks of the Greatest Generation–the generation who fought the Great Depression, the Germans, and the Japanese, and came out victorious–dwindles.

The older I get, the more I appreciate the accomplishments of that generation.

Economists Survey: Economy to Skyrocket

02/27/2006: Just remember: Economists almost never get it right. We shall see in the upcoming months if the reckoning of our debt-on-steroids economy is going to happen this year or another time. I hope this survey is right, but I have my doubts.

Prediction: We will be in recession by year’s end. Whether it pops, or whether the air is let out gradually, the debt balloon is almost maxed out. Consumers have taken on a near-critical mass of debt. The issue is merely whether it will be a hard or soft landing.

Here’s the wild-card: if it become obvious by the Summer that we are in a recession, then there will be major turnover in the House and Senate in November: the Democrats will take back both houses of Congress.

If that happens, the impeachment wheels will begin turning by February 2007.

Is the Real Estate Bubble in Progress?

02/27/2006: New home sales in January plunged 5%. The number of new homes available for sale is at an all-time high.

Could the bubble be bursting? We shall see. However, prices cannot get infinitely high, especially when they have been driven into low-earth orbit by ultra-low interest rates that have fueled excessive borrowing.

An economy that continues to build on debt must either add value commensurate with that debt, or otherwise experience a devaluation of assets (deflation).

Pro-Choice Researcher: Women who Have Abortions More Prone to Depression

02/26/2006: In 2003, the Elliot Institute–a pro-life think tank–published research suggesting that women who have abortions are 65% more likely to suffer clinical depression than those who carry to term. Given the source, it is understandable why skeptics would question the results.

However, a self-described “atheist, rationalist pro-choice” researcher is now reporting that women who have abortions are showing a statistically significant greater tendency toward depression. In the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, David Fergusson reports, “Those having an abortion had elevated rates of subsequent mental health problems including depression, anxiety, suicidal behaviors and substance use disorders.”

This is also reflective of observations by Meta Uchtman, who–as regional director of the Cincinnatti Suiciders Anonymous–observed that, during a 35 month period, nearly 50% (approximately 1,800 out of 4,000) had prior abortions.

This is not to suggest that every woman who has an abortion will suffer depression and/or attempt suicide; however, the chances of it happening increase. That said, it does contrast with the dogma promoted by the abortionistas, who go out of their way to minimize–or flat-out ignore–the reality of abortion.

I’ll never knock anyone who has an abortion. I can certainly understand why one would do it, especially given that it is legal and promoted by popular culture.

In addition, when one is between a rock and a hard place, and abortion is readily available, fear can motivate people to do many things they otherwise would not do. Every abortion clinic director has tales of women–who once carried picket signs demonstrating against the clinic–eventually had abortions at those same clinics. I believe those stories because I know some of the women who did exactly that. Helping them accept God’s grace was/is one of the hardest things.

At any rate, the premise that abortion increases the chance of depression has now been confirmed by both pro-life and pro-choice sources.

Reflections on DubaiGate

02/25/2006: President Bush is a uniter, not a divider. He has united both parties against him. DubaiGate has sealed his failure; his lame duck period has begun, and he has only himself to blame. George Walker Bush is no Reagan.

He now claims he did not know the specifics of the Dubai ports deal until a few days ago. Fair enough, but—that being the case—why did he threaten to veto legislation that killed it? That is by far his dumbest move as President. When Jimmy Carter and former House Speaker Tom Foley support it, should that not set off a BS detector in any reasonable person?

I understand that a President has to trust his Treasury Department. He must also trust the advice he gets from the Pentagon and other advisers.

However, given that this deal involves transferring ownership of six of our ports to a middle-eastern government, and given that such governments have been known to actively and passively support Islammunist terror groups, it would not seem as a wise move to allow the sale of our ports to such countries.

At the very least, it would behoove the President to alert the American people to ensure that port security is not compromised in the deal. He should have learned—from the Harriet Miers debacle—that the “trust me” response is as welcome as a bad case of hemorrhoids (not that there is any such thing as a “good case” of hemorrhoids).

DubaiGate also provides the following reflections:

(1) Federal government is too darn big. When White House staff say that they did not know of the deal until very late in the game, that is understandable. This is because such deals are typically worked out in the low and middle levels of key bureaucracies—Treasury, Homeland Security, and Defense.

The vetting process has significant detail and—by the time it gets to the top—folks like Snow, Rumsfeld, Chertoff, and Rove may only get a paragraph or two of briefing. They may inquire with their deputies regarding critical matters, and the answer will likely be brief. At that level, you are at the mercy of the people who work for you.

(2) These types of deals are made necessary due to deficit spending. Personally, I hate the idea of our ports being sold to foreign entities of any type: British or Arab. However, when your country runs a deficit—especially a trade deficit—key assets must be sold to cover the losses.

Until your government puts an end to deficit spending, do not expect this trend to improve.

(3) Your government is impotent. Your Congressional representatives and Senators are out of touch with you. If you ran your finances the way they run the national finances, you would be bankrupt by year’s end. If you approached home security the way they approach national security, you might as well have a “burglarize me” sign on your front door.

(4) Your government is not your friend. Whether they bungle their responses to national disasters, whether they confiscate your firearms (even though you committed no crimes), whether they are selling our ports to foreign countries, whether they do nothing to control the borders, your government cares for only one thing: getting more and more control over your life. We are heading down the path to totalitarian government and both parties are greasing the wheels.

(5) President Bush is a disgrace to conservatism. Aside from his tax cuts, his economic policies have been terrible: he has yet to veto a spending bill, he has presided over the largest expansion of government since FDR. Even with the policies in which he has seen success—tax cuts, Iraq—he has done a terrible job relating the successes to the American people. While he has at times shown moral clarity, he lacks the ability to communicate clear vision.

The only thing helping the GOP right now is that the DNC is far worse. Currently, both parties suck. If the libertarians had a strong leader, they’d be stealing the show.

Fumento: Exposing Political Correctness in Scientific Journals

02/23/2006: Michael Fumento, in his latest column, exposes the political agendas of top scientific magazines.

This is why I take the square root whenever I hear someone say, “scientists have shown this..” or “researchers have demonstrated that..” or “medical researchers have discovered a link between such and such…”

That’s not to say that all scientists are advacing political agendas; however, they are like anyone else: we all need accountability. Whenever someone says scientists have no political agendas, I want whatever they are smoking.