Saturday, October 23, 2004

Book Available on Barnes and Noble Online!

My book is now available on BN.com if anyone is interested in buying it. Will be available on Amazon.com shortly.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Iraq the Model, An Interesting Blog

I came across this blog while web-surfing and I find it very interesting. Get some idea of what many Iraqis think about the war and the upcoming election.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Another Kerry Endorsement He Isn't Going to Be Highlighting

This article by Jeff Wright of The Registar-Guard in Eugene, OR is yet another high profile Kerry Endorsement, this time form Academy Award winning "documentarian" Michael Moore. Of course everyone already knew he was going for Kerry, but I found this passage interesting:

Moore said Kerry may not be perfect, but is far superior to former Vice President Al Gore and this year's other Democratic presidential hopefuls. "There's a reason that they're saying Kerry is the No. 1 liberal in the Senate," said Moore. "It's because he is the No. 1 liberal in the Senate."

Hey, didn't Moore support former General Wesley Clark over Kerry? Now Kerry is "far superior" to all the other hopefuls. This guy changes opinions more than Kerry. Such as when he said there was no terrorist threat right after 9/11 and opposed the invasion of Afghanistan, and then did a 180 for his "documentary" Farenheit 9/11 in condemning Bush for "diverting" resources from the Afghan war into Iraq, even though Moore has opposed both.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

From The Marriott Chronicles

Want Flu Vaccine? Repeal Vaccines For Children Program
by Michael Marriott


WASHINGTON, Aug. 15 -- Over strenuous objections by some drug companies, the Federal Government is establishing a program guaranteeing free vaccine for millions of children who are poor or uninsured.

The above paragraph appeared in the New York Times in August 1993. President Clinton had just signed legislation creating what came to be known as Vaccines For Children (VFC) Program. The article went on to explain that the federal government now had the power to purchase vaccines from pharmaceutical companies at “discount” prices and distribute them to doctors. Clinton’s aim in this, the first legislative proposal of his new administration, was to “… assure that all children in the United States are protected against vaccine-preventable infectious diseases by their second birthday.”

The Times article noted that drug company spokesmen lambasted the new legislation, quoting David R. Bethune of American Cyanamid that it would “destroy the vaccine industry in this country.” Of particular concern to the industry was the provision to allow the government to buy vaccines at a bulk discount, thereby controlling vaccine costs. In effect vaccine producers faced a price cap.

It hardly took an economic genius to predict the outcome of the legislation. Whenever the demand for a commodity rises while simultaneously the commodity is sold below market price, a shortage of that commodity is bound to occur. And in the ten years since the VFC Program took effect that is precisely what has happened. The vaccine market cannot reach supply and demand equilibrium since it is artificially constrained by the federal government from doing so.

As Mr. Bethune predicted, vaccine manufacturers know a losing proposition when they see one and have jumped ship, leaving vaccine production to fewer firms.

Today in the U.S., five companies make vaccines as opposed to twenty five companies 30 years ago. In particular, flu vaccine has been in short supply since at least 2000 as vaccine producers are unwilling to make a product whose price is controlled and where the risk of litigation is high. The Kansas City Star noted during the flu vaccine shortage of 2003 that the “… decision to force vaccine makers to discount their price resulted in 'declining financial incentives to develop and produce vaccines.'”

Another year of the VFC Program has only aggravated matters.

This year its affects on Americans would be laughable if not so deadly serious. Quoting the Star regarding the current flu vaccine shortage: “Scene by disheartening scene, the spectacle of a severe shortage of flu vaccine is unfolding around the country. Last week elderly and chronically ill people waited in line for hours to get flu shots. Some were turned away. One died after hitting her head when she passed out or fell while waiting.”

Government response to the mess it has created ranges from the heavy handed to the ham-fisted. One governmental reaction to the shortage is reported by the Star: “States threatened to fine or jail doctors and nurses who gave shots to anyone not in the high-risk groups.” In a less bellicose manner, a township in New Jersey totaling 70,000 people is holding a flu vaccine lottery this year to “parcel out” its paltry 300 available doses.

The net result of Clinton altruism is less flu vaccine, fewer vaccinations, much fewer vaccine producers, less research, more head injury deaths and possible jail time for doctors and nurses. Still, economic knuckleheads abound. Again from the Star: “Congress, the Justice Department, and the Securities and Exchange Commission began investigations into how the nation has been left, on the brink of flu season, with half the flu vaccine it needs.” I can save them all time: the cause of the flu vaccine shortage is government interference in the vaccine marketplace. Congress must repeal the loathsome Clinton Vaccine for Children Program posthaste.

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Re-importing Drugs from Canada

The first time I ever heard of this idea, and the fact that some Canadian politicians were encouraging it, I said "Hurrah!" Nothing could please me more than bankrupting the Canadian government, but I figured the Canadians would back down if American politicians actually allowed re-importation to occur. I am not worried about drug company profits because the Canadian government is picking up the regular bulk price of all the drugs it buys and is then selling them back to Canadians at a subsidized discount under the universal health care plan in Canada. The main reason I am not worried about drug company profits though is because it is readily apparent the Canadian government will not allow America to re-import the drugs en masse, because the Canadian government would in effect have to buy drugs for a population many times their own, an even more untenable situation than the situation already in place.

Sure enough, this is already beginning to dawn on Canadians as demonstrated by this article. I wish people would study economics more, but the chances of that are slim. The only reason drugs are "cheap" in Canada is because the government taxes the hell out of its citizens to pay for those drugs and then resells them to Canadians at a loss. Were Canada to engage in this dopey practice for their population and ours then their whole government would run out of money within 10 years at the maximum. Not only that, but as the article suggests, they will end up having massive drug shortages for their own citizens.

Let us see what ingenious idea John Kerry comes up with next to replace this idea when the Canadians recognize reality (for the first time in a long, long while) and tell him it isn't going to happen. Such an eventuality almost makes a Kerry victory worth it.

Saturday, October 16, 2004

Gee, I wonder if he was pandering?

When asked to name his heroes, John Kerry named three people:

1) Michael J. Fox (actor afflicted with Parkinson's Disease who has endorsed Kerry so that government money will be thrown into stem cell research, thus guaranteeing that Parkinson's is never cured.)

2) Christopher Reeves (who just died, and who his running mate claimed would have walked again had Kerry been the President.)

3) Former Georgia Senator Max Cleland who lost both legs and one arm in Vietnam.


It's amazing that all of his "heroes" either actively support his campaign, or represent an emotional link to one of his few popular election issues. Also, all of his heroes were/are cripples, people striken with debilitating ailments.

Of course if the same question were asked to President Bush, I'm sure one of his answers would be that crazy carpenter from Nazareth.

WHy can't any of these people pay homage to a real hero once in a while? Has no one ever heard of George Washington????

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

The Government Affords Us Rights?

Finally, the last debate is over, but there was one slip-up by Kerry that Bush didn't address, except subconsciously.

In a question over the odious election year issue of gay marriage Kerry said,

"But I also believe that because we are the United States of America, we're a country with a great, unbelievable Constitution, with rights that we afford people, that you can't discriminate in the workplace. You can't discriminate in the rights that you afford people.

You can't disallow someone the right to visit their partner in a hospital. You have to allow people to transfer property, which is why I'm for partnership rights and so forth." emphasis added

This concept that the government and Constitution "affords" us right and "allows" us to do things is the sign of a pure statist, and it came through in an accidental way of a subconscious choice of words.

Bush commented on this underlying political principle in a similar subconscious manner, but with a different point in saying,

"I do know that we have a choice to make in America and that is to treat people with tolerance and respect and dignity. It's important that we do that.

And I also know in a free society people, consenting adults can live the way they want to live."

This difference won't be talked about by anyone except those of us who care about freedom and liberty and eventually getting rid of the statist influences in our government, not to mention defeating all forces of irrationality in our society in general. But I think this moment was very very important, and extremely telling about both candidates.

Monday, October 11, 2004

Happy Columbus Day!

While tomorrow is actually the real Columbus Day, marking the 512th anniversary of the great day when Christopher Columbus discovered the New World, today is the day we observe the event.

This used to be done by parades, but now is done mostly with head hung low as people all over the country have been brow-beaten into feeling guilty for Columbus Day. Everything that went bad after Columbus discovered America, i.e. the spreading of diseases due to the gap of civilization between advanced Europeans and primitive Americans, etc, is supposed to be blamed on Columbus and then even more absurdly, on us.

Why? Because some people who had 50,000 years of unfettered time and space in which to develop great cultures to rival Europe (and which had finally begun happening about 1000-500 years before Columbus arrived, but obviously much too late to alter the course of history) and did not ended up being overwhelmed, assimilated, or destroyed by Europeans anxious to start anew in the New World. For this, we are to be condemned and made to feel guilty for eternity, because Europeans developed ships capable of carrying men back and forth across the Atlantic and developed weapons that allowed several hundred men to conquer millions (with a little help from disgruntled tribes the Incas and Aztecs ticked off). Not to mention the fact that Europeans had the gall to domestic animals and raise them for livestock (i.e. cows and pigs) thereby coming into contact and developing immunities to nasty things like smallpox, which a culture not yet developed to the stage of animal husbandry could not possibly deal with. Thank God the Europeans weren't convinced of their utter depravity and inferiority to those whom they displaced before they came up with cures to many of the diseases of the world, like smallpox.

The multicultural hysteria surrounding Columbus Day and the political effort to remain it "Indigenous People's Day" is just an outgrowth of the same irrational desire to worship the primitive "way of life" that created and continues to feed environmentalism and most other forms of loony leftism in the world.

While we must acknowledge and embrace the reality that Columbus was a man, not a God (like all men) we must also acknowledge his great achievements. He was a persistent man with a vision of doing something no one else had accomplished, not finding a new world, but opening a quick sea route for trade with China and India. When he found the New World (and eventually realized it was a New World) he quickly went about the task of trying to develop it for civilization.

Englishmen, of whom we Americans descend at least ideologically, were able to make a new start thanks to Columbus's pioneering voyage of discovery and his navigation charts and writings which allowed others to trace his steps to the New World and discover the land which would and still does hold the greatest and freest people on the planet. For this we should commemorate the man and his achievement as something which made the world better and exemplifies the greatest things of Western Civilization.

As always on Columbus Day, Thank You Christopher Columbus.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Arab-American PAC Supports Kerry

This quote was pulled from this Fox News article.

“President George W. Bush hurt us on many levels. He hurt us on civil rights. He hurt us on the war he started. He hurt us in the Middle East by leaving the Palestinians and Israelis [to] kill each other,” said AAPAC member Abed Hammoud.


Does Kerry really want this kind of endorsement? This same group endorsed Bush in 2000, but apparently his "starting" of the War on Terrorism and his carte blanche "allowal" of Israeli defense was just too much for this Arab-American group to stand. This despite what Michael Moore tells us are deep and troubling ties between Bush and the Saudis as well as the Bin Laden family. You'd think a President in bed with Arab governments would lock the nomination up easily, but alas, just as the "secret" Saudi oil deal didn't pan out, neither did the "secret" Arab-American support plan.

Also, what civil rights have Arab-Americans lost? If they are being more scrutinized or eyed more often, they should blame the 19 Arabs who attacked the United States on September 11. They should blame the thousands of Arab fanatics who kill themselves and others every year in heinous terrorist attacks. Why do they blame Bush?

The key in the quote is, "He hurt us on the war he started." What war did Bush start? This ridiculous quote shows just how amoral this PAC is as well as any candidate who continues to associate with it.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

THE MASTER DEBATER FALLS
By
Michael Marriott



The second Bush-Kerry debate held October 8 in St. Louis is now history. As I sit here on October 9 listening to the political wags grade the outcome in favor of Kerry, I shake my head in disbelief: George W. Bush thoroughly pummeled the hapless Senator from Massachusetts. Bush was stylish, forceful, commanding, fact oriented, humorous and glib; by contrast Kerry was halting, stumbling, dour, uninspiring, unspecific and mendacious. Kerry, the purported master debater, has fallen on his rhetorical petard.

If Bush was a racehorse his lead out of the gate was by lengths. Highly animated, he took the fight directly to Kerry, as when the first questioner expressed concern over Kerry’s inconsistencies (the questioner framed him as “wishy-washy”). After Kerry gave a rambling, incoherent answer about Bush’s campaign being a “weapon of mass deception” (so that’s why Kerry can’t keep a consistent position!), Bush put Kerry’s flip-flopping succinctly: “I can see why people at your workplace think he changes positions a lot, because he does.” Bush understands that A is A, that a thing or person is what it is.

Bush continually scored points as the following sample indicates:


Non-homeland, non-defense discretionary spending was raising at 15 percent a year when I got into office. And today it's less than 1 percent, because we're working together to try to bring this deficit under control. Like you, I'm concerned about the deficit. But I am not going to shortchange our troops in harm's way. And I'm not going to run up taxes, which will cost this economy jobs.

And here he says he's going to be a fiscal conservative, all of a sudden. It's just not credible. You cannot believe it.

Now, he says he's only going to tax the rich. Do you realize, 900,000 small businesses will be taxed under his plan because most small businesses are Subchapter S corps or limited partnerships, and they pay tax at the individual income tax level. And so when you're running up the taxes like that, you're taxing job creators, and that's not how you keep jobs here.

MICHAELSON: Mr. President, if there were a vacancy in the Supreme Court and you had the opportunity to fill that position today, who would you choose and why?
BUSH: I'm not telling.
(LAUGHTER)


You're right, what does matter is a plan. He said he's for — you're now for capping punitive damages? That's odd. You should have shown up on the floor in the Senate and voted for it then. Medical liability issues are a problem, a significant problem. He's been in the United States Senate for 20 years and he hasn't addressed it.

Yes, I mean, he's got a record. It's been there for 20 years. You can run, but you can't hide. He voted 98 times to raise taxes. I mean, these aren't make-up figures. And so people are going to have to look at the record. Look at the record of the man running for the president. They don't name him the most liberal in the United States Senate because he hasn't shown up to many meetings. They named him because of his votes. And it's reality. It's just not credible to say he's going to keep taxes down and balance budgets.


One may disagree with President Bush but at least it is possible to disagree since his positions are clear, reasoned and unequivocal. Kerry, however, has a distinct problem in his responses. His generally tepid answers rarely are reasoned beyond blaming Bush for any and everything. The master debater is far from a master: indeed, his modes operandi was to avoid direct answers while continually sniping at Bush. Here are a few samples of his technique:


GIBSON: The next question is for Senator Kerry, and it comes from over here, from Randee Jacobs.
JACOBS: Iran sponsors terrorism and has missiles capable of hitting Israel and southern Europe. Iran will have nuclear weapons in two to three years time. In the event that U.N. sanctions don't stop this threat, what will you do as president?
KERRY: I don't think you can just rely on U.N. sanctions, Randee. But you're absolutely correct, it is a threat, it's a huge threat. The world is more dangerous today..And what's interesting is, it's a threat that has grown while the president has been preoccupied with Iraq, where there wasn't a threat.


GIBSON: I both — I heard you both say — I have heard you both say during the campaign, I just heard you say it, that you're going to cut the deficit by a half in four years. But I didn't hear one thing in the last three and a half minutes that would indicate how either one of you do that.
KERRY: After 9/11, after the recession had ended, the president asked for another tax cut and promised 5.6 million jobs would be created. He lost 1.6 million, ladies and gentlemen. And most of that tax cut went to the wealthiest people in the country.


BRONSING: Senator Kerry, we have been fortunate that there have been no further terrorist attacks on American soil since 9/11. Why do you think this is? And if elected, what will you do to assure our safety?
KERRY: Thank you very much, Ann. I've asked in my security briefings why that is, and I can't go into all the answers, et cetera, but let me say this to you. This president and his administration have told you and all of us it's not a question of when, it's a question of — excuse me — not a question of if, it's a question of when. We've been told that.


GIBSON: Senator Kerry, we got several questions along this line, and I'm just curious if you'd go further on what you talked about with tort reform. Would you be favoring capping awards on pain and suffering? Would you limit attorney's fees?
KERRY: Yes, I think we should look at the punitive and we should have some limitations. But look, what's really important, Charlie, is the president is just trying to scare everybody here with throwing labels around. I mean, "compassionate conservative," what does that mean? Cutting 500,000 kids from after-school programs, cutting 365,000 kids from health care, running up the biggest deficits in American history. Mr. President, you're batting 0 for 2.



So Kerry has established that everything wrong in the world is the fault of George W. Bush, including the nefarious act of “label throwing”. Ominously, former Texas Rangers baseball owner Bush is batting zero for two, whatever the hell that means. What remedies does Kerry propose? The master debater has (get this) plans! The main characteristic of his plans is that he has them somewhere and if elected he may even use them, although for the present he cannot articulate what they are exactly.

Consider the following. Regarding health care: “I have a plan to cover those folks. And it's a plan that lowers cost for everybody, covers all children.” Regarding nuclear proliferation: “At his pace, it's going to take 13 years to reduce and get ahold of all the loose nuclear material in the former Soviet Union. I've proposed a plan that can capture it and contain it and clean it within four years.” Regarding legal reform: “It's in my health-care proposal. Go to johnkerry.com. You can pull it off of the Internet. And you'll find a tort reform plan.” Regarding plans themselves: “I mean, seriously — labels don't mean anything. What means something is: Do you have a plan? And I want to talk about my plan some more — I hope we can.” Regarding Bush’s lack of plans: “Now, you didn't hear any plan from the president, because he doesn't have a plan to lower the cost of health care.” The coup de grace comes in his response on Iraq policy: “I could do a better job. My plan does a better job. And that's why I'll be a better commander in chief."

Kerry has now firmly established his bona fides to become president, for while George Bush is busy bullying uninsured children, Kerry is diligently penning plans. His plans prove he will do a better job. Forget the fact that Kerry was without plans during his twenty year Senate career. His sudden fondness for plans is deep, revealing really; undoubtedly his unspecified plans, will, in the campaign rhetoric of the previous century, provide us with a “full dinner pail”. Keep in mind the president had given specific answers to all the above questions but no matter: various pundits, like Mor-tone Kondracke of Fox news, will later proclaim that Kerry has definitely won the debate. (As a note, I wonder if Mor-tone would consider buying some beachfront property I am selling in the Mohave Desert).

But the master debater was not yet finished. Even he has limits when it comes to nebulous, inexplicable plans. Launching what he considers rhetorical attacks on Bush, he tries to score debating points. His first mode of attack is to appeal to authority for his candidacy.


The president — and this is one of the reasons why I am very proud in this race to have the support of General John Shalikashvili, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; Admiral William Crowe, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; General Tony McPeak, who ran the air war for the president's father and did a brilliant job, supporting me; General Wes Clark, who won the war in Kosovo, supporting me; because they all — and General Baca, who was the head of the National Guard, supporting me.

…you know, I was at a forum with Michael J. Fox the other day in New Hampshire...

Chris Reeve is a friend of mine.


Obviously General John Shalikashvili, Admiral William Crowe, General Tony McPeak, General Wes Clark, General Baca, Michael J. Fox and Chris Reeve are all-knowing, infallible beings when it comes to picking presidents. The good news for Kerry is he chewed up debate time by his incessant name-dropping, thereby leaving less time to have to explain the particulars of his aforementioned plans.

Kerry’s second prong of attack was to say funny, dumb things. This mode of attack is uniquely effective within his democratic base. Consider the following Kerry statements followed by my analysis.


A Portion of a Kerry Response: …But you heard the president just say to you that we've added money. Folks, the test is not if you've added money; the test is that you've done everything possible to make America secure. He chose a tax cut for wealthy Americans over the things that I listed to you…

A Portion of another Kerry Response: …And I'm going to put in place a better homeland security effort. Look, 95 percent of our containers coming into this country are not inspected today. When you get on an airplane, your bag is X- rayed, but the cargo hold isn't X-rayed. Do you feel safer? This president in the last debate said, "Well, that would be a big tax gap if we did that.”. Ladies and gentlemen, it's his tax plan. He chose a tax cut for the wealthiest Americans over getting that equipment out into the homeland as fast as possible…


Comment: So our security depends on more money to X-ray cargo and to fund other terrorist prevention measures. But wait, this is not a test of money. To think people have the audacity to criticize Kerry for flip-flopping!


Senator Kerry, would you be willing to look directly into the camera and, using simple and unequivocal language, give the American people your solemn pledge not to sign any legislation that will increase the tax burden on families earning less than $200,000 a year during your first term?
KERRY: Absolutely. Yes. Right into the camera. Yes. I am not going to raise taxes.



Comment: God I can’t stop laughing. What first hit my funny bone are the dual notions that Kerry can use simple, unequivocal language and issue a “solemn pledge” within the confines of a single answer. The second thing to strike me as humorous is that Kerry will not raise middle class taxes. Bush stated that there is a gap of over a trillion dollars between Kerry’s spending promises and the money he plans to collect by repeal of tax cuts on wealthy Americans. Kerry never bothered to explain the discrepancy, commenting in a withering display of verbal prowess that Bush was using “fuzzy math figures”. I can only conclude, unless Kerry plans to monetize the debt, that he is lying regarding this point.


And I've gotten good people, like former Secretary of the Treasury Bob Rubin, for instance, who showed how to balance budgets and give you a good economy, to help me crunch these numbers and make them work.


Comment: Whoops, I forgot to include Rubin as an authority figure for Kerry. Never mind. Even Kerry knows that the numbers don’t work without “crunching”, which makes his eyes-in-the-camera pledge even funnier. In fairness, perhaps he meant he would not raise taxes on cameras.


I'm going to be a president who believes in science.


Comment: Yeah sure you do global warming breath.


Secondly, we're going to create a manufacturing jobs credit and a new jobs credit for people to be able to help hire and be more competitive here in America.


Comment: For a guy who believes in science Kerry has missed the boat here. Either that or the social science of economics has totally overlooked this method of job creation.


Boy, to listen to that -- the president, I don't think, is living in a world of reality with respect to the environment. Now, if you're a Red Sox fan, that's OK. But if you're a president, it's not.


Comment: Okay Senator, time for the long crooked staff to pull you off the stage. Dissing the president is one thing, dissing Red Sox fans is not only stupid, it puts Massachusetts into play as a swing state.


DEGENHART: Senator Kerry, suppose you are speaking with a voter who believed abortion is murder and the voter asked for reassurance that his or her tax dollars would not go to support abortion, what would you say to that person?
KERRY: I would say to that person exactly what I will say to you right now.

First of all, I cannot tell you how deeply I respect the belief about life and when it begins. I'm a Catholic, raised a Catholic. I was an altar boy. Religion has been a huge part of my life. It helped lead me through a war, leads me today.

But I can't take what is an article of faith for me and legislate it for someone who doesn't share that article of faith, whether they be agnostic, atheist, Jew, Protestant, whatever. I can't do that.

But I can counsel people. I can talk reasonably about life and about responsibility. I can talk to people, as my wife Teresa does, about making other choices, and about abstinence, and about all these other things that we ought to do as a responsible society.

But as a president, I have to represent all the people in the nation. And I have to make that judgment.

Now, I believe that you can take that position and not be pro- abortion, but you have to afford people their constitutional rights. And that means being smart about allowing people to be fully educated, to know what their options are in life, and making certain that you don't deny a poor person the right to be able to have whatever the constitution affords them if they can't afford it otherwise.

That's why I think it's important. That's why I think it's important for the United States, for instance, not to have this rigid ideological restriction on helping families around the world to be able to make a smart decision about family planning.

You'll help prevent AIDS.

You'll help prevent unwanted children, unwanted pregnancies.

You'll actually do a better job, I think, of passing on the moral responsibility that is expressed in your question. And I truly respect it.



Comment: What the hell kind of answer was that? I think it interesting though that former alter-boy Kerry points out that faith is an important guiding force in his life. Those who plan to vote for Kerry because of Bush’s religiosity need to take note.


Ladies and gentlemen, that's just not true what he said. The Wall Street Journal said 96 percent of small businesses are not affected at all by my plan. And you know why he gets that count? The president got $84 from a timber company that owns, and he's counted as a small business. Dick Cheney's counted as a small business. That's how they do things. That's just not right.


Comment: The debate was in effect over at this point. I can’t top President Bush’s reaction. BUSH: I own a timber company? (LAUGHTER) That's news to me. (LAUGHTER) Need some wood? Even dour Kerry had to chuckle at Bush’s rejoinder; he had a “God what a doofus I can be” look on his smiling face.

There was a Saturday Night Live skit during the 1988 Bush-Dukakis election where Jon Lovitz played Governor Michael Dukakis. In mock disbelief after Bush mangles an answer, Lovitz deadpans, “I can’t believe I am losing to this guy”. Similarly, it is hard to imagine that President Bush is barely ahead in the polls considering Kerry’s contradictions, misstatements and method of argumentation. Moreover, only the most partisan of commentator can claim Kerry won this debate. Such proclamations defy objective analysis of what was actually said. The only way that Kerry won this second debate is if Bush: 1) sat placidly on his stool, 2) drooled into the camera and 3) wore a dunce hat. Short of this it was a decisive Bush win. The master debater is a mere apprentice at best.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Kerry Engages in Context Dropping

The following comments are based on what I saw in John Kerry's press conference this afternoon, I could not find a transcript of it for some reason, so if I incorrectly attribute ideas or comments to the Senator, I apologize in advance. If anyone notices any, please let me know so I can correct the post as quickly as possible.



John Kerry, on the heels of a government report which claims Saddam Hussein hadn't produce Weapons of Mass Destruction since 1991, is now claiming that knowing what we know now, he wouldn't have led the United States to war in Iraq. Knowing what we know now? How can he so blatantly drop the context in which the decision was made? We didn't know in 2002/2003 what we know now in October of 2004 about Iraqi weapons, this is an impossibility. The only reason we are in possession of our new knowledge is because we control Iraq and have access to all of their old government documents, officials, bureaucrats, and dictator. When the war was looming, we could only rely on Saddam's actions, which are still bizarre and inexplicable, and our intelligence agencies, including the American, British, Israeli, French, German, Russian, and the United Nations services. No one in the security council or elsewhere, except the unbelievable Iraqis, said that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction, and given the events of September 11 as well as Saddam Hussein's past record of using his WMDs and numerous terrorist connections, how could anyone not see Iraq as a threat that needed to be dealt with? Kerry's previous position that the war was conducted improperly, as opposed to being wrong because of what we know today, made more sense. Also, there existed other very legitimate reasons to get rid of Saddam, such as planning to kill an American President or his daily unprovoked attacks on the U.S. military by firing missiles at our jet fighters.

Kerry didn't stop there, he made two other totally ridiculous and idiotic assertions.

First, he claimed that Al Qaida is in sixty different countries, why aren't we invading them? Yes, Al Qaida is in countries all over the world, including the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Spain, France, Germany, etc. According to Kerry, Bush's action in Iraq would be the equivalent of invading France to route out Al Qaida. The only problem is that most countries aren't a safe haven for Al Qaida, the terrorists must operate in secret and attempt to evade searching authorities. Countries like Syria, Iran, and until recently Iraq and Afghanistan let Al Qaida and other terrorists operate in the open, to raise money, plan, and organize. To compare this situation to how Britain, France, and the United States deal with terrorists is ridiculous in the extreme and shows better than President Bush ever could, what is wrong with John Kerry's mind, i.e. it cannot process information properly or integrate information in any rational way.

Secondly, he continued this same idiocy in a different vain by saying that numerous countries possess the knowledge and ability to produce weapons of mass destruction, including South Africa, Brazil, Japan, etc. and hence why are we not invading them? Again, what threat does a chemically armed Japan pose to us, or for that matter any free country?

John Kerry actually understands our war against Islamic fundamentalists worse than President Bush, he sees no difference in Britain having Al Qaida within its borders and Saddam's Iraq, he sees no difference between Brazil having a nuclear weapon and Iran or North Korea having nuclear weapons.

This means that in a Kerry administration he will not only be just as concerned with Brazilian nuclear weapons as Iranian, but that he will out of hand reject military action against Iran, because he wouldn't do it against Brazil.

It appears the mouse running the wheel in Kerry's head has finally died.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Christians and Mystics on the Left Get a Pass

Much has been made, and should continue to be made, of religious mysticism and its unfortunate and harmful influence on American conservatism and the Republican Party. But the media and mainstreamers give a wholesale pass to the exact same influences on the left when they are just as glaringly bad and harmful.

For instance, Jimmy Carter and Al Gore are both "Born Again" Christians (as is President Bush) but you might never know it from the media bias and omission. Jimmy Carter as President was directly influenced by his beliefs in his foolish attempts to force a peace between Israelis and Palestinians even though the leaders of these two groups have somewhat differing goals (the Israelis would like to live and the Palestinian would like the Israelis not to live). But even more glaringly, it was under Jimmy Carter's tutelage that a U.S. embassy, which is American sovereign territory, was overrun and the people inside taken hostage by a hostile foreign regime. The U.S. response was to do absolutely nothing aside from a harebrained and half-ashamed covert helicopter rescue which ended in failure and more U.S. deaths. The media portrays this as a tactical error, as opposed to the broad generalizations we would and should expect them to make if similar situations occur under a religious Republican.

But even more dangerous than "Born Again" fundamentalists is the primitive mysticism residing on the left in the form of environmentalism. This issue hasn't popped up much in the campaign, but environmentalists and their concerns make up a large part of Democratic/Liberal orthodoxy and a large part of the constituency of the Democratic Party. They are so blindly beholden to their primitive beliefs in the infallibility of nature and the total evil of mankind that they block out all evidence and rational argument to the contrary. At least the Bible has generally good things to say concerning man's relationship to the environment (the nature of all "revealed" knowledge, such as that based on the Bible, Koran, Buddhist sutras, etc., is the possibility that they could potentially be correct on things, but for the wrong reasons and in a way which is useless once one can throw out "revealed" knowledge as legitimate knowledge), environmentalists are wrong about every single one of their outrageous claims, as well as their fundamental belief system.

Religion is a problem in today's America because an irrational metaphysics threatens everything about America that is rational, i.e. Capitalism, the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, etc. But we must also realize that today's religionists, while certainly containing a lot of nuts and wackos who occasionally do very crazy things, i.e. David Koresh claiming to be Jesus reborn and organizing a cult of heavily armed loons in Waco, TX (while also molesting children he was supposedly teaching the word of God to), the religious craziness we see today is timid in comparison to what occurred in this country in the heyday of the Second Great Awakening in the 1820s and 1830s. People routinely claimed all sorts of weird mystical visions as conversion experiences, fasted themselves to death, became so absorbed by religion that they gave up their careers and all other social activity, founded all sorts of different religious sects, claimed they talked to God and were prophets, and basically engaged in the purest practical application of the ideas of Saint Augustine and Martin Luther our country has ever had the unfortunate experience of witnessing. And this was a mere generation after men the likes of James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Patrick Henry, Ben Franklin, and George Washington strode the political and cultural landscape. We are certainly no where near this level of outright hysteria today, but the effects of it are still around today in the likes of evangelical Christians and Mormons.

The point is not to downplay the threat religion poses to the country, far from it, but we must put today's events and trends into the historical context of which they are inexorably a part. The growth of primitive nature worship, or regrowth rather since it was destroyed along with the Indian "way of life," is what is new, combining earth worship with a Luddite-like hatred for mankind's progress (even though man's advanced brain and therefore his ability to reason were produced through evolution, a natural process). The ebb and tide of religionism is an unfortunate recurrence in American life, so long as it can be kept out of the government (an endeavor no more successful now than it was in the days of the founders), it should be contained in the battle for ideas, which it must ultimately lose. Environmentalism is a religious and political movement combined in every aspect from the devout irrationality of its adherents to their propensity for violence when they face dissent and disagreement.

Mysticism and religion are always a threat, a serious threat, to the freedom and liberty of men. They are no more threatening from the right as from the left and in some cases the latter is much, much worse.