Sunday, October 31, 2004


Here's a humorous audio clip, showcasing how Kerry has more positions than the Kama Sutra. Just click above the picture of the Waffle King and listen.

Friday, October 29, 2004

A New Link

For those who haven't noticed, I've added a new link to my list in the right hand corner. It's called Let's Try Freedom, and it's a nice place to drop in for a visit.

I don't have time for visiting large numbers of blogs, so I have links only to the ones I visit consistently. There are a handful of others that I visit, as well, from time to time.

Anyway, check him out. It's worth your time, I believe.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

What Makes a Hero? hero-A person noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose, especially one who has risked or sacrificed his or her life.

Merriam-Webster: hero-b : an illustrious warrior c : a man admired for his achievements and noble qualities d : one that shows great courage.

I realize that many people see John Kerry giving a speech, and they suddenly hear "The Marine Hymn," or perhaps "When the Caissons Go Rolling Along." Angel wings flutter, and harps of victory tinkle in their ears. They swoon to the words of this modern Alexander, bestriding the political landscape like a colossus.

Now, you may notice from the sound of my voice that my tongue is planted firmly in cheek, but I have a serious question: Kerry has--along with many of his supporters--portrayed himself as a hero, of sorts. So my inquiry is, "What makes a hero?" I'll try laying out my own meaning of the word. I believe it has a very specific definition, and has been bandied about entirely too often.

To me, a hero is someone who goes beyond the call of duty or service or what is accepted as an appropriate, justifiable reaction to a crisis. Doing more than the average individual, and standing out above all the rest, is the stuff of heroes.

Historical examples abound:

We know of stories in which people dived into shark-filled waters to rescue total strangers. That is heroism.

We know of situations where soldiers have shielded their comrades with their own bodies to save them from grenade attacks. That is heroism.

Sometimes, in our personal lives, we meet heroes. Like the parent who gives up a dream to do right by his children, who puts aside his own desires for their betterment and proper upbringing. That is heroism.

Look at the life of Nathan Hale, an American espionage agent and patriot, captured by the British during the Revolution. Though General Washington tried to save him, the British hanged him as a spy. His final words before his execution ring strong and true, even today: "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." That is heroism.

And what of Davy Crockett and others who defended the Alamo, in 1836. Many of these people came to the aid of the Texans late in the game, almost certainly aware of the odds against them. Yet they came on, despite the stacked deck, making a stand for Texas' independence. That is heroism.

The last days of Constantine XI Paleologus, emperor of the Byzantine Empire at its fall, tell a story of heroic proportions. Besieged by an army of approximately 150,000 Muslim Turks, he managed holding them off for two months--wreaking horrific losses on their army--with only about 8,000 men. In the end, he and the remaining survivors rushed out of their citadel stronghold, into the streets, where they fought and died to the last man. It is said that the emperor charged straight into a horde of his enemies, sword swinging. That is heroism.

Though I easily could write a book exemplifying historical heroism, I have one more example to share; it is the most important one of all.

The story of Jesus.

Imagine spending most of eternity in the very presence of God. Imagine knowing what that's like. Imagine choosing of your own volition to descend to the earth in the form of a weak and fragile human being; to grow into a child and then a man; to begin a ministry for the express purpose of saving souls from hell. Imagine the love that comprises. Imagine the compassion.

Now imagine what it must've felt like to be mocked and ridiculed for your love and compassion; to be unwelcome in your hometown; to walk the roads a man alone, filled with sorrow at what you've seen. Imagine being arrested for proclaiming the truth, being tried and imprisoned, scourged and tortured. Imagine making your way to a cross and allowing nails to be driven through your hands and feet, then being hoisted into the air to asphyxiate and die in one of the most horrifying, shameful deaths ever devised by the twisted human mind.

Imagine knowing your entire life would culminate in such an event. Imagine going to it willingly, for the sake of people who hate you. That is heroism. Jesus epitomizes the word. No better example of a hero exists--from the Creation, until now.

Thankfully, you and I both know that this wasn't the story's end. But only the beginning.

I believe we've covered properly the definition of what makes a hero. Feel free to supply me with further examples of your own. In each case, I believe true heroism includes--and requires--a sacrifice.

And the next time you hear a certain someone touting his minimal war record at every conceivable opportunity, I hope you'll think of this post, and react accordingly.

Founding Quotes of Note XIII

It's a two-fer-one deal!

Will they scrawl this first one on Jesse Jackson't tombstone?:

"Of those men who have overturned the liberties of republics, the greatest number have begun their career by paying an obsequious court to the people, commencing demagogues and ending tyrants." --Federalist No. 1


Next time you watch MTV, or see one of those "vote even if you're an idiot and couldn't point out the President in a lineup" commercials, think of this one:

"If Virtue & Knowledge are diffused among the People, they will never be enslav'd. This will be their great Security." --Samuel Adams

Mmmmm, good food for thought.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004


Now this is an appropriate use of the U.N. flag, in Montana:

On Friday, KGEZ radio host John Stokes in Kalispell, Mont., got wind of a planned ceremony that afternoon at the state Capitol in Helena to honor the U.N. on United Nations Day (though Sunday was actually U.N. Day). Stokes tells WorldNetDaily the ceremony included members of the Montana National Guard carrying and presenting a U.N. flag that was to be hoisted over the building.

At 1 p.m., the time the Capitol ceremony was to take place, over 30 protesters gathered at Stokes' radio station for the flag burning. Stokes says the crowd included mothers, children, seniors and handicapped citizens.

"We began with the Star Spangled Banner blaring across the airways, saluting the U.S. flag flying high above the station, followed by the Pledge of Allegiance and a very appropriate prayer for our nation, our Constitution and the Republic," Stokes explained.

"Then the volunteers provided the pole and gas, and I provided the despicable U.N. flag."
The crowd shouted out a verbal countdown before the flag was torched.

Said Stokes: "Whoosh. It was completely gone in seconds. I hope it was an omen."

God bless you, good people of Montana! May the U.N. meet the same fate as its flag, which it so richly deserves.

Bush and Civil Unions

It seems the president has parted ways with many in his own party, regarding civil unions:

"I don't think we should deny people rights to a civil union, a legal arrangement, if that's what a state chooses to do so. ...

"I view the definition of marriage different from legal arrangements that enable people to have rights. And I strongly believe that marriage ought to be defined as a union between a man and a woman.

"Now, having said that, states ought to be able to have the right to pass laws that enable people to be able to have rights like others," Bush told ABC's Charlie Gibson in an interview broadcast Tuesday on "Good Morning America."

I agree that this should be a state issue, not a federal one, since that is consistent with our Founders' intended republican form of government. But Bush's rationale is strange. According to him, marriage is a sacred institution between one man and one woman; but people of the same sex should be able to unite in a civil ceremony, so that they may "have the same rights as others." Isn't this just parsing words? It comes across as Bush moving further to the left to appeal to disenchanted Democrats who aren't particularly fond of Kerry. Already, everyone has the right to live with whom they will, sleep with whom they choose, and will personal estates to whomever they choose. I can give the person I deem worthy power of attorney over my finances and properties, and no one is standing in my way. I can have whatever visitors in the hospital that I want. So this appears an attempt to look compassionate and tolerant--and that's all. I see little substance to the argument.

Monday, October 25, 2004

Kerry's Voting Record on Abortion

Here are some facts on Kerry's abortion views, according to this purportedly nonpartisan website:

1. Will not appoint Justice against Roe while Court is 5-4. (May 2004)

2. Kerry staunchly resists restrictions on abortions. (Apr 2004)

3. Partial-birth abortion ban undermine women's right to choose. (Nov 2003)

4. No criminalization of a woman's right to choose. (Jun 2003)

5. Voted NO on criminal penalty for harming unborn fetus during other crime. (Mar 2004)

6. Voted NO on maintaining ban on Military Base Abortions. (Jun 2000)

7. Voted NO on banning partial birth abortions. (Oct 1999)

8. Voted NO on disallowing overseas military abortions. (May 1999)

9. Rated 100% by NARAL, indicating a pro-choice voting record. (Dec 2003)

Does he sound like a moderate, or an extremist, to you? Keep in mind that his supposed "religious faith" tells him that life begins at conception.

Psalm 23

1: The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

2: He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

3: He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.

4: Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

5: Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

6: Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

This is one of the most beautiful chapters of the Bible. I find its evocative language and assurances comforting.

Who's Lying?

From The Washington Times:

U.N. ambassadors from several nations are disputing assertions by Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry that he met for hours with all members of the U.N. Security Council just a week before voting in October 2002 to authorize the use of force in Iraq. An investigation by The Washington Times reveals that while the candidate did talk for an unspecified period to at least a few members of the panel, no such meeting, as described by Mr. Kerry on a number of occasions over the past year, ever occurred. At the second presidential debate earlier this month, Mr. Kerry said he was more attuned to international concerns on Iraq than President Bush, citing his meeting with the entire Security Council. "This president hasn't listened. I went to meet with the members of the Security Council in the week before we voted. I went to New York. I talked to all of them, to find out how serious they were about really holding Saddam Hussein accountable," Mr. Kerry said of the Iraqi dictator. Speaking before the Council on Foreign Relations in New York in December 2003, Mr. Kerry explained that he understood the "real readiness" of the United Nations to "take this seriously" because he met "with the entire Security Council, and we spent a couple of hours talking about what they saw as the path to a united front in order to be able to deal with Saddam Hussein." But of the five ambassadors on the Security Council in 2002 who were reached directly for comment, four said they had never met Mr. Kerry. The four also said that no one who worked for their countries' U.N. missions had met with Mr. Kerry either. The former ambassadors who said on the record they had never met Mr. Kerry included the representatives of Mexico, Colombia and Bulgaria. The ambassador of a fourth country gave a similar account on the condition that his country not be identified.

Let's see: We have the U.N. on one side, and Kerry on the other, each with a different version of events. I know Audie Murphy Kerry is a liar, but I trust the U.N. about as much. I feel a headache coming on.

Friday, October 22, 2004

The Upper Crust is Moldy

Regarding our president, British spy novelist John Le Carre spews some venom, urging voters to kick Bush out of office, next month:

"Probably no American president in history has been so universally hated abroad as Bush: for his bullying unilateralism, his dismissal of international treaties, his reckless indifference to the aspirations of other nations and cultures," Le Carre wrote in the online article.

He also accused Mr Bush of having "contempt for institutions of world government, and above all for misusing the cause of anti-terrorism in order to unleash an illegal war - and now anarchy - upon Iraq".

There are legitimate reasons for criticizing Bush. I have serious grievances against him, myself, as most of you already know. But don't you get sick and tired of these blustering, limp-wristed elitist snots in other countries telling us how to run ours? It reveals volumes about such complainants that they usually resort to U.N. sympathizing and the dilapidation of national sovereignty.

Mr. Le Carre, you may be a native of the British Isles, but I find your French surname fitting.

Thursday, October 21, 2004


Ok, ok, these are not astounding prophecies; but I have three predictions for the near future:

1.There will be another terrorist attack on America.

Here's my reasoning--Yes, Bush has made some progress in keeping terrorists at bay in Iraq and Afghanistan. Every dead maniac in those two countries is one less potential bomber in the U.S. But these do not comprise the only "Great Satan"-hating Islamic jihadis in the world. And with borders as porous as sieves (particularly the southern border), we're in deep trouble. Our government flatly refuses to secure this means of entry. In fact, it won't even address the problem.

2. President Bush will serve a second term in the White House.

For all Kerry's good show and attempted domination of all sides of every issue, he's a charlatan of the worst sort. His phoniness is neither subtle, nor appealing. I think the citizens of this country see through his lies. Personally, I think his antics regarding his military career will be his undoing.

3. If the election is close, the Kerry campaign will attempt a coup through the court system.

Remember the 2000 election? Boy, I do. It was a knock-down-drag-out dirty situation. The Democrats tried every underhanded trick in the book to falsely keep the presidency. I see the possibilities for treachery in the upcoming election as endless. John Kerry is a power-hungry narcissist who sees himself as one born to be president. Unless he loses by a wide margin, he'll not concede gracefully or easily. I expect we'll have to pry his teeth from Bush's ankles before putting him down.

So those are my predictions, for the time being. I hope I'm dead wrong on the attack and the court battle. Only time will tell.

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Can I Get a Witness?

"One single object...[will merit] the endless gratitude of the society: that of restraining the judges from usurping legislation." --Thomas Jefferson

Right now, I propose a new piece of legislation: May this quote be tattooed on the forehead of every black-robed tyrant across America, whether in the state supreme courts, or the federal. Does anyone second my motion?

Clingin' on For Life

Lyn Nofziger's take on the Republican Party:

"[M]y big complaint about the Republican Party, of which I am a reluctant member, is that I think Republican office holders in general have become too much like Democrats. Like them, we are a party of big government, of too many rules, regulations and laws that intrude deeply and unnecessarily into our lives. We rely on government instead of on ourselves. We've come to believe that government has an obligation to look after us and take care of us, and lay down rules for living our personal lives. Like the Dems, we are big spenders; in fact, we are becoming even bigger spenders than they are. In truth there is hardly a dime's worth of difference between the two parties and, in equal truth, a lot of people like it that way, especially as it pertains to the Congress. They have this nonsensical idea that if a majority in both parties agree on a law it automatically is a good law. I give you Prohibition as an example."

This is a pretty accurate description of contemporary Republican realities. My question is: If you actually believe all of the above, why remain a member of the party? Its devolution into a pale image of its former self certainly inspires no loyalty. The Democrats are gonzo, and the Republicans are what the Dems used to be. During the Protestant Reformation, many decried the negative effects of "mechanical Christianity." They saw this as going through the motions and choosing the lesser of two evils, the greater being paganism. Likewise, mechanical Republicanism--that is, voting GOP for pragmatic reasons--needs a serious reality check. I mean no offense, but ask yourselves these questions: If both major parties are failing us and shirking their duties, even blatantly defying their own stated principles, why not vote third party? Even if your candidate loses, haven't you sent a relevant message? I know some believe this is a wasted vote; and to a degree, I understand their concern. But if no one ever votes third party--hovering always within the safe confines of bifactionalism--how do we ever make a change for the better?

Monday, October 18, 2004

Fundamentalism in Christianity

If you read newspapers, magazines, watch mainstream news shows on t.v., or listen to certain radio programs, you've probably heard the term "fundamentalist" bandied about. And usually, this word is associated with the most rabid, fanatical, extreme elements of a nonexistent entity--the "religious right." Often, you'll notice the comparison between fundamentalist Christians and Muslims of the same stripe. I'm sick and tired of such mischaracterizations and distortions. I'm fed up with the outright lies. So I'll slice through all the garbage and define the term accurately:

Christian fundamentalism is an outlook that believes the Bible is the inspired Word of God, inerrant in its message and intent, and literally true. In other words, it is God's love letter to the human race; his book of expectations and instructions for living a fulfilling life; his offering of the free gift of salvation, through Christ. It's message of redemption and the hope of eternity with God is genuine. And when I say literally true, here's what I mean: when Genesis speaks of the creation, Adam and Eve's walk with God, their fall and subsequent expulsion from Eden, it relates these events as they actually happened. When the Bible tells us that humanity was destroyed in a universal flood, with only Noah and his family spared, it elaborates upon an historical event. Other true stories include that of Moses, Elijah, Daniel, and the apostles' evangelism. Most importantly, it speaks truth in sharing the story of Christ's unique birth, his ministry, his death, burial, and resurrection, and his ascension back into Heaven to be with the Father. All of these stories give us literal truth in their particulars.

That is Christian fundamentalism. In short, taking the Bible seriously. I know this because I, myself, am a Christian fundamentalist. I was raised in such a household, in such a family, and have frequented Christian fundamentalist churches all my life. I realize variations exist amongst this sub-category of Protestantism; but I can assure you that I've never known anyone who acts or thinks the way fundamentalists are portrayed as acting and thinking in the media.

As for a correlation between Christian fundamentalism and Islamic fundamentalism, there's only one area in which they seem alike--in accepting their given texts at face-value. That's it. Christian fundamentalists tend toward evangelization of their brethren and instituting Biblical tenets in their personal lives. Islamic fundamentalists tend toward murder and abuse in the name of their God, with a simple offer to the world--convert, be subjugated, or die.

When was the last time you heard or read about a Christian fundamentalist blowing up a school bus full of children in the name of God, I wonder?

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Fruit of the Spirit

This being Sunday, I thought I'd share a great passage of scripture:

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such their is no law.

Galatians 5:22-23

Saturday, October 16, 2004

No Provocation Needed

In rebuttal of the columnist, Charley Reese, Jeffrey Rubin of the Conservative Book Club writes:

What he is discounting, among other things, is Islam, whose appeal to man's baser instincts--especially pride, anger, and lust--is capable of turning every perceived injustice or humiliation into a motive for indiscriminate slaughter. Historically, Islam has been peaceful only when it has been powerless (My emphasis). Now, thanks largely to oil wealth, mass immigration, and the demographic suicide of the West, it is capable of lashing out again--and it will continue to, whenever and wherever it can, regardless of Israeli or American policy.

In 1938, when Islam was weaker than ever before, the Catholic writer Hillaire Belloc predicted it would rise again to threaten the West. At the time, the state of Israel did not exist. What Belloc understood, and what Reese evidently does not, is that Muslims need no provocation to wage jihad against non-Muslims. Injustice may add fuel to the fire, but the flame was lit by Muhammed and his Koran.

I thought this was a timely assessment, and one with which I very much agree.

Founding Quotes of Note XII

"It should be your care, therefore, and mine, to elevate the minds of our children and exalt their courage; to accelerate and animate their industry and activity; to excite in them an habitual contempt of meanness, abhorrence of injustice and inhumanity, and an ambition to excel in every capacity, faculty, and virtue. If we suffer their minds to grovel and creep in infancy, they will grovel all their lives." --John Adams

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

The Final Presidential Debate

I just finished watching the face-off. I thought I'd share my thoughts on the night's show, for those of you who didn't have the time (or the inclination) for viewing the festivities.

Keep in mind while reading my analysis that I'm not a supporter of either candidate (Bill, reholster your sidearm).

I'll focus on their demeanors, first. The President had an upbeat, chipper attitude, with a pervasive and pleasant smile on his face. By contrast, Kerry seemed very sour--in expression and tone. He smiled little, rather choosing the "constipated Frankenstein's monster" look. He seemed far less pleased at being present in this debate than he did the first one.

Kerry chose repetition as his primary tactic, rehashing all the catch-phrases and criticisms of the first debate. Bush came off as markedly different, though, with an aggressive--yet positive--outlook and a solid command of facts and information.

Both men had their witty moments, but the President commanded more levity than Kerry. Kerry once compared Bush to Tony Soprano, and Bush said Kerry is on the far left bank of the mainstream, in America.

Bush came across as more honest and sincere in his beliefs than Kerry. He also made a rather impressive statement, early on, saying that he will not take a flu shot, due to the medicine's scarcity.

Kerry hammered home the point that he would provide all Americans with health care, though he never laid out his plan for funding such a venture.

Kerry harbored a very negative persona, finding reason for blaming Bush for just about every conceivable problem in our country. I realize negativity is partly the nature of challenging a sitting president; but he went to ridiculous extremes in this regard. For example, he claimed that the health care problem amongst the populace exclusively is Bush's fault.

Bush said he wanted health care decisions in the hands of patients and their doctors, not the government. Kerry is a socialist, in my view. He bluntly assured the camera that he would not privatize social security. His assurances to the contrary aside, his medical coverage "plan" is one that probably made Hillary Clinton leap out of her coffin and cheer.

Bush stated that he's against amnesty for illegals, but then he went on to talk about "worker cards" for aliens. So in truth, they would no longer be illegal aliens, because he'd make them legal. Without strong crackdowns on the border, and strong deportation policies, I'd reject such a program. This was one of his weakest points.

Kerry lied through his teeth on the "assault weapons ban." He equated the ban with keeping automatic machine guns out of criminal hands, yet it did no such thing. The weapons labeled "assault weapons" in the ban merely were semi-automatic weapons. This was a terror tactic that he used, for scaring people about gun crimes. Forgive my momentary digression, but this ban died a much-deserved death. Now someone just drive a stake into its heart, and I'll be happy.

Kerry made a good crack at the end about how he "married up"--funny, and oh so true, at least monetarily speaking. But he spent the rest of his time spitting out one negative comment after another. Bush remained positive throughout the debate, talking about the future and the good days ahead. Of course, I think both of them are wrong. One thing's for sure: Bush is much more likeable than Kerry.

Bush's worst moments came in the debate's middle, when he was asked point-blank by Bob Schieffer: "Will you try to overturn Roe v. Wade?" Bush became evasive, assuring the audience that he'd require no litmus test for judges, but that he'd promote ways of supporting a pro-life agenda. He never directly answered the question.

I missed the second presidential debate, so I can't comment on its details or Bush's performance. But all in all, this one was vastly more interesting than the first. If it's not readily obvious from the commentary above, I'll say it now:

Bush won. Won? Heck, he mopped the floor with Kerry.

Zero Tolerance, Zero Common Sense

Isn't political correctness beautiful?

LONDONDERRY, N.H. -- The school board has voted to ban a photo of a student from the senior section of his high school yearbook because he is posed with a shotgun.

School officials said they'd reconsider including the photo, if the boy would only allow them to digitally remove the gun from his hands and replace it with a giant sucker like those carried by The Lollipop Guild in The Wizard of Oz (I'm kidding, guys).

Seriously, they were willing to post another photo, but only if no gun appeared.

Last month the yearbook staff, adviser, principal and superintendent chose to bar the photo from the yearbook, saying the firearm was inappropriate.

Inappropriate for whom? A linguine-spined liberal who cries when a fly alights on his arm? People who believe guns harbor demonic spirits that transform happy-go-lucky children into Columbine-like assassins? People who believe boys should be feminized at an early age, by playing with Barbies (ok, maybe a Ken doll)?

Put bluntly, it's only "inappropriate" if you're a simpering wimp.

Dean (the boy's mother) cited a statement on student publications in the board's policy manual: "We encourage the use of school sponsored publications to express students' points of view. They shall be free from all policy restrictions outside the normal rules for responsible journalism."

As a result of liberalism, the school finds no conflict in contradicting its own policies, printed in black and white for all to read.

Another example of the same mindset:

Phelps used the costume when taking part of the re-enactment of the Battle of Chancellorville which was staged by the 124th New York State Volunteers. The re-enactors say they are models of the unit that came from Orange County and fought in the Civil war. High School students were recruited to take part in the re-enactors club. Phelps' mother questions why give the students fake guns and then arrest them.

The article isn't 100% clear, but it seems as if the gun wasn't real.

Is it a requirement that those applying for school administrative positions possess intelligence quotients lower than the school's dumbest student? Even if your school has a daunting curriculum and an amazing track-record of success, contending with such idiots supplies reason enough for homeschooling.

Monday, October 11, 2004

"In Fourteen-Hundred Ninety-Two, Columbus Sailed the Ocean Blue"

Here's a great article on Columbus Day, giving the other side of the story--the one we've heard far too few times, what with all the character assassinations and outright lies about this man. If you derive your information from liberals, modern history texts, or many movies, you might think Columbus was a racist, fascist, homophobic, murderous monster. And you'd be dead wrong, too.

Guns For Cash in Iraq

This seems a useless show-tactic:

BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) - Followers of radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr trickled in to police stations in Baghdad's Sadr City district to hand in weapons Monday under a deal seen as a key step toward ending weeks of fighting with U.S. and Iraqi forces in the Shiite militant stronghold.

Fighters are supposed to be compensated for the weapons they turn in, but Salman said those responsible for the payments hadn't turned up yet. So, receipts were issued instead.

The rates ranged from $5 for a hand grenade to $1,000 for a heavy-caliber machine gun, police said.

I have a couple of questions about this policy. First, what stops these folks from stealing weapons--from law-abiding citizens and elsewhere--and bringing them in for cash? Second, after being paid for these assorted weapons, what keeps them from going out and buying more? Ditto for such programs in the U.S. This is a feel-good show of "getting things done," with little chance of making inroads toward success.

No Coming Draft

I receive a weekly e-newsletter from my local Congressman, John J. Duncan, Jr. I found today's edition very interesting, so I thought I'd share it with you:

The possibility of reinstating the military draft has received tremendous attention in recent days. Because many conflicting statements about this issue have been reported, I feel it is important to clarify the status of this issue.

President Bush has repeatedly denounced any plan for reinstating the draft. In fact, the Republican Party platform adopted in New York only weeks ago states that the G.O.P. “created the all-volunteer force and opposes reinstitution of the draft, whether directly or through compulsory national service.”

Secretary of State Colin Powell, a decorated veteran and former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, has joined the President in dismissing any claim the current administration is eyeing a return to conscripted service.

The most powerful denunciation of the draft, however, has been levied by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. Appearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee September 23, Secretary Rumsfeld stated: “I’m not supposed to get into politics, but it is absolutely false that anyone in this administration is considering reinstating the draft. That is nonsense.”

He later continued: “We are not having trouble maintaining a force of volunteers. Every single person’s a volunteer. We do not need to use compulsion to get people to come in the armed services. We’ve got an ample number of talented, skillful, courageous, dedicated young men and women willing to serve.”

The call for instituting a draft is being led by some of the most liberal members of the entire Congress. Rep. Charles Rangel (D-N.Y.) introduced H.R. 163, the Universal National Service Act, January 7, 2003 – the first day of the 108th Congress.

Rep. Rangel’s bill would have required every citizen between the ages of 18 and 26 to fulfill two years of service to either the military or a civilian agency promoting national defense.

Not one Republican House leader ever endorsed the idea. In fact, only 14 of the House’s 435 members elected to cosponsor the act. All are among most the most liberal thinkers in Congress.

Last week the House voted on Rep. Rangel’s proposal. In the end, H.R. 163 garnered only two supporters, neither of whom is Republican, with 402 members opposed. Even Rep. Rangel failed to vote for his own bill.

Sen. Fritz Hollings (D-S.C.) introduced identical legislation in the Senate. Not one other senator has signaled support for the proposal by serving as a cosponsor.

The Senate Republican leadership scheduled no hearings for the measure, and no Republican leader from the body has shown any support for establishing a draft. Sen. Hollings’ bill will die without being considered when the 108th Congress adjourns in a few weeks.

An e-mail circulating throughout the country and apparently targeting college campuses has insinuated that the Selective Service recently received $28 million “to prepare for a military draft.” Nothing could be more misleading.

Congress provided $26.3 million for this year’s entire Selective Service budget. The agency’s primary responsibility for the last quarter century has been overseeing the mandatory registration of young men between the ages of 18 and 25, a benign process that in no way increases the likelihood of a draft but still requires funding.

As is nearly always true, I support President Bush’s position on this matter. I have always opposed the draft because I do not believe the federal government should ever forcibly employ any citizen unless no reasonable alternative can be found, even for national defense. Ours is a nation founded on the principle of liberty, and we cannot surrender our individual freedom to the government without great risk.

President Bush and Congress have made great strides in recent years to increase military pay and provide additional benefits to our troops. Military service is one of the most honorable ways to serve our country, but we can successfully instill national pride in young people without mandating a stint in the armed services.

I sincerely hope no candidate will seize on fear to boost his electoral hopes in November. This is an important election that should be decided by the honest debate of serious issues. It is the very least all Americans deserve.

I've said before that I'm staunchly against the draft, for reasons of freedom. So we should chuck the Selective Service. Now I'm as skeptical of government as all of you, but reviving the draft would be hard for the Bush Administration (My apologies to the conspiratorialists). The President is on record bluntly decrying the draft, as are several officials who work for him. Plus, the movement clearly has no serious support in the House or the Senate, except among the lunatic fringe. Isn't it interesting that Kerry accuses Bush of plans for its reinstitution, yet its only supporters are Democrats?

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Aliens Among Us

"I can do a better job of protecting America's security because the [global] test that I was talking about was a test of legitimacy, not just in the globe, but elsewhere." --John Kerry on the "global test."

It's official, folks. John Kerry is an advance scout for a race of extraterrestrial beings bent on manipulating U.S. elections.

Barred from Debate

Don't you love "democracy"-in-action?

Two third-party presidential candidates were arrested at the presidential debate in St. Louis when they tried to serve the debate commission with a show cause order.

Michael Badnarik of the Libertarian Party and David Cobb of the Green Party were protesting their exclusion from the debate between President Bush and Democratic Party nominee John Kerry.

Cobb said his purpose was "to expose the undemocratic nature of these debates, this election and our government. These are not debates, these are infomercials."

I absolutely agree with this assessment. If the voters derserve the freedom of voting, don't they also deserve a fair hearing from all the race's candidates? A debate of the issues from all the contenders? I think the Green Party is cobbled together from the lunatic fringe; but for these men to be forcibly kept from challenging the anointed bifactionals is a disgrace and counter to liberty. Apparently, Bush and Kerry have much to fear from their opponents.

Wednesday, October 6, 2004

On the Cusp of Abortion Ban?

According to a pro-abortion group, thirty states are prepared for a ban on abortion, if Bush appoints the required pro-life judges in a second term.

The pro-abortion Center for Reproductive Rights said some states have old laws on the books that would be triggered by the overturning of the landmark Roe v. Wade (search) decision. Others have language in their state constitutions or strongly anti-abortion legislatures that would act quickly if the federal protection for abortion was ended and the issue reverted to the states.

I would like nothing better than a total outlawing of abortion, except under extreme circumstances in which the mother's life is jeopardized. But I suspect the above information--even if true--is an attempt at creating hysteria among pro-abortionists, during these pre-election days. And there are many "Ifs" that would need to come to pass for such an event. "If" Bush gets reelected; "if" he appoints pro-life judges (I'm skeptical); "if" Roe Vs. Wade is overturned; and "if" the aforementioned states choose pursuit of such bans--all of these "ifs" must become sureties, first.

The part holding interest for me is the apparently strong anti-abortion sentiment lingering still in the hearts of our citizens--even after more than thirty years of pro-abortion propaganda and hogwash fed to us like swill. It just makes me feel a little better, knowing that many, many people still think it's wrong to kill unborn babies, for stupid and selfish reasons. Would that the powers that be felt the same.

Founding Quotes of Note XI

"A general dissolution of principles and manners will more surely overthrow the liberties of America than the whole force of the common enemy. While the people are virtuous they cannot be subdued; but when once they lose their virtue then will be ready to surrender their liberties to the first external or internal invader." --Samuel Adams

Tuesday, October 5, 2004

The Vice-Presidential Debate

I watched the debate, tonight, in its entirety. I must admit that both candidates comported themselves well, laying out their respective cases eloquently and effectively. Edwards is a better, more dynamic speaker than Kerry; and it goes without saying that Cheney runs rings around Bush in the public speaking arena.

I believe Cheney won overall. He did an excellent job describing Kerry's inconsistencies, his lousy voting record, and his poor judgment. Edwards also brought up some legitimate points about the Bush Administration's prosecuting of the Iraq war; but Cheney's concise rebuttals of facts about improvements that have taken place in Iraq trumped Edwards' valid points, in my opinion.

Some observations: I found Gwen Ifill's performance interesting. Though she deserves credit for challenging both candidates on various issues, and for coming across as more even-handed than Jim Lehrer in the last debate (but that's not saying much), she made one egregious lapse, revealing her bias. During one segment, she asked Cheney a loaded question, then immediately tossed Edwards a softball. I don't remember the specifics of her question for Cheney, but her inquiry of Edwards went something like this:"When the present administration mentions that Kerry has a trial lawyer on his ticket, do you feel like that is a personal attack?" Ooh, deep, probing stuff, huh? I don't remember any such opportunity given to Cheney for portraying himself as a victim. Additionally, she introduced Cheney's personal family life in a way that Edwards never had to contend with.

So all in all, a diverting debate, though I doubt it changed any minds. We can't all be John "Flapjack" Kerry.

Sunday, October 3, 2004

What's Under Kerry's Turban?

During the first presidential debate, Kerry made this remark, with regards to Iran:

"I think the United States should have offered the opportunity to provide the nuclear fuel, test them, see whether or not they were actually looking for it for peaceful purposes," Kerry said in a critique of the Bush administration's handling of Tehran's nuclear program, which the Iranians claim is only for civilian purposes.

Isn't fantasy fun? This is a major problem with leftists. They think that people basically are good, and with a little Yankee logic and reason, they'll see the light. Problem is, that's complete bunko. Even a cursory examination of ancient or recent history belies this gibberish.

The London Financial Times reports that, according to "unnamed diplomats and a Kerry adviser," top EU officials from Germany and the Netherlands are lobbying the Bush Administration to adopt John Kerry's position on Iran and its nuclear program. High-level meetings were held with both the White House and the Kerry campaign last week.

Since the EU is a hotbed of socialism, isn't this reason enough for a rejection of Kerry's position?

More on Iran:

Iranian leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has urged his country's weapons developers to step up work on making a nuclear bomb, a U.S. official said, according to Geostrategy-Direct, the global intelligence news service.

According to the official, an authoritative source in the Iranian exile community has stated that Khamenei met recently with senior government and military leaders on the nuclear weapons program.

Khamenei told the gathering, "We must have two bombs ready to go in January or you are not Muslims," the official said.

Strange. All this time, I thought they just wanted the nuclear program for civilian purposes. Now I'm confused.

Private Spaceflights

SpaceShipOne, a privately built spacecraft, made its first successful flight into space on September 30. This was the first part of a three-pronged effort to win a $1o million prize. This is history in action, folks. I love it, because it showcases what individuals can do without government intervention, and it somewhat removes the power of space travel from government exclusivity.

In a related story, the UK's Virgin Spaceflights has plans for providing space tours to those with enough cash for a ticket (almost $199,000 a head).

Gosh, I hope they have a discount day, or something. Maybe only charge $190,000, or thereabouts. That's a bargain, but $199,000 is too rich for my blood!


Made in 2002, and starring Christian Bale and Sean Bean (Boromir, from The Lord of the Rings), this is one heckuva good movie.

Brief summary: In the future, a revolution has taken tight hold of the government's reigns. With the goal of eradicating war and chaos on a massive scale, the new powers that be devise a drug that suppresses human emotions--thus removing all tempting factors that lead to war. No more love, no fear. . .and no hate. In fact, no feelings of any sort. But what if some people refused their "medicine" and fought back against the tyranny?

Intrigued? So was I. This film was good on many levels: good science fiction, good drama, good social commentary, and a good action film, to boot. The acting was excellent, the special effects competently done, and the dialogue and storyline intelligent. Though there were some well-choreographed fight scenes, one high point of the movie was its reliance on character and suspense--rather than a colossal fx budget--to move the story along at a fast pace. The movie reminded me of 1984, Brave New World, and other dystopias. But not quite so grim, in the long run.

Its only flaw (if flaw you'd call it) was its brevity. I wanted it to go on and on. It's one of the best science fiction movies I've seen in a while. Highly recommended.