WWW Opinion Times

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Souter May Become First Victim of "Lost Liberty"

Logan Darrow Clements, CEO of Freestar Media, LLC, has petitioned the town of Weare, NH to build a hotel at 34 Cilley Hill Road. This would be an everyday non-event until one considers the person residing there now, Supreme Court Justice David Souter.

Clements argues that the city of Weare will receive much greater tax revenue with a hotel on this property, and would therefore benefit from the enforcement of immanent domain. This, of course, is the argument behind the recent Kelo v. City of New London case which was supported by Souter.
Freestar Media, LLC: "The proposed development, called 'The Lost Liberty Hotel' will feature the 'Just Desserts Cafe' and include a museum, open to the public, featuring a permanent exhibit on the loss of freedom in America. Instead of a Gideon's Bible each guest will receive a free copy of Ayn Rand's novel 'Atlas Shrugged.'"
We at Opinion Times would like to see the Gideon Bible remain, but well done Mr. Clements anyway! This would be an appropriate monument to the excesses of Supreme Court hegemony over the actual language and intent of the Constitution.

Maybe the same thing could be done at 125 Broad Street in New York City at the ACLU headquarters. Just think of it: a brand new hotel bringing in more tax revenue per square foot than office space. On the first floor is the new home of New York Evangelical College with adjacent Court House which hangs the Ten Commandments above the bench.

Read the press release here.

Hat Tip: Drudge Report.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Economist: Religious Just Starting Rise

Economist.com gives its take on the rise of the "Religious Right" in American politics.
"Religious America's switch to the right is rooted in two things: liberal over-reach and conservative organisation. The consistent whinge from the Christian right about "liberal activist judges" exceeding their mandate contains a kernel of truth. In the 1960s and 1970s, judges changed America from a country where every school day began with a prayer, and abortion and pornography were frowned on, to a country where school prayer was banned and both abortion and pornography were protected by the constitution.

The fact that the courts were running so far ahead of public opinion in a generally religious country bolstered the religious right in two ways. It provoked white evangelicals to join the political fray. And it persuaded all religious types to bond together. Protestants and Catholics, who used to be at loggerheads, have now found common ground, especially on abortion. "
This is not just a passing fad but the result of more than 25 years of effort which has led to a more mature and diverse Christian response to political and legal actions. President Reagan's move to remove the Fairness Doctrine which led to the rise of Rush Limbaugh and a slew of conservative radio talk shows and the emergence of the blogs has also facilitated the rise of Social and Evangelical Conservatives.

The gains which took fruit in 2004 have not yet consolidated, but a successful 2006 election in Congress and with various Senate and Governors' races could change the political landscape for the proceeding 20-25 years.

Durbin on a Bad Run

IowaHawk has found evidence that Dick Durbin is having a bad run in the customer service area. Thankfully, these few samples give us an example of patience and tolerance from one of our Senate leaders.

Green Counter-revolution

Zach Wendling opines about Kelo:
"Now that development interests official[ly] trump property rights, I think it's natural to wonder, 'What trumps development interests?' "
This makes me consider that now with government help I can get rid of my pesky neighbors and get that green space my boys have been craving!

PowerLine gives George Will's opinion on the decision.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Nobel Prize Nominee Says Terri Schiavo was Able to See

Confirming the suspicions of some, a Nobel Prize nominated Doctor confirms that Terri Schiavo was aware and not blind when she was killed in a Florida hospice. Dr. William Hammesfahr, a Florida neurologist, disputed some of the autopsy results in a recent interview.
LifeNews.com Unlike the constant drumbeat from the husband, his attorneys, and his doctors, the brain tissue was not dissolved, with a head of just spinal fluid," Hammesfahr explained. "In fact, large areas were 'relatively preserved.'"

"Obviously, the pathologists comments that she could not see were not borne out by reality," he said.

"The autopsy results confirmed my opinion ... that the frontal areas of the brains, the areas that deal with awareness and cognition were relatively intact," Hammesfahr added.

As a result, the Florida physician said Terri likely had little trouble with her eyesight in the years leading up to her death.

"In fact, the relay areas from the frontal and front temporal regions of the brain, to the spinal cord and the brain stem, by way of the basal ganglia, were preserved, thus the evident responses which she was able to express to her family and to the clinicians seeing her or viewing her videotape," he said.
The Doctor also noted the autopsy did not verify Terri's husband Michael's claim that she suffered a heart attack nor did it rule out physical abuse as the cause of her collapse and loss of oxygen back in 1991 which resulted in her deteriorated neurological condition.
Hammesfahr pointed out that the autopsy shows Terri's collapse was not the result of bulimia, eating disorders or a heart attack. That leaves open the possibility that Terri's collapse could have been the result of physical abuse.

"As we noted in the press, there was no heart attack, or evident reason for this to have happened (and certainly not of Terri's making)," he said.

He also indicated that the autopsy did not completely check for all types of physical abuse and he and a neurologist for Michael both agreed neck injuries were present.
Unfortunately, a woman who was fully mentally aware was destroyed by a court system unwilling to make life the ultimate test of good law. By refusing to embrace the concept of "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness," a rogue judge destroyed innocent human life. And by neglecting the enumerated executive power given to him, the Florida Governor sat back and watched it happen allowing the question to remain open: will we as a society ever again value the concept of life as the foundational principle of our freedoms?

Monday, June 20, 2005

Housing Market: What's Next

. . . MaxedOutMama has her take and some research.

Durbin: Guantanamo is Cruel, Not Partial Birth Abortion

Robert Knight of Concerned Women of America points out an interesting fact left out of Sen. Dick Durbin's (R-IL) recent comments suggesting the Guantanamo Bay prisoner facility is cruel and inhumane to suspected terrorist prisoners captured on the battlefield. He believes that taking a baby from its mother's womb, sucking out its brains and discarding it is not cruelty.

Read about it here.

Dry Creek Chronicles

Here's a great new blog I came across today: Dry Creek Chronicles.

Cheaper by the Dozen--Plus Four

Arkansas State Representative Jim Bob Dugger and his wife are expecting a new child, and it will bring their family up to sixteen children.

Now that's family values!

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Editorial Writers Claim Religious Discriminiation

The Indianapolis Star, a Gannett Co. newspaper, has been charged with religious discrimination in a lawsuit brought by two former editorial writers, James Patterson and Lisa Coffey.
INDIANAPOLIS: "[Patterson and Coffey have charged in court that] top newsroom managers 'consistently and repeatedly demonstrated ... a negative hostility toward Christianity.'"

The two are asking to be reinstated at the paper, and be compensated for lost income, benefits, emotional distress and unspecified punitive damages.

"Lisa and I aren't the only employees that have been driven away from this company and we thought it was time for someone to say, 'Goodness gracious. This isn't right,'" Patterson said.
This is consistent with the changes which have taken place at the Star since Gannett purchased Central Newspapers, the former parent company of the Star and the Arizona Republic. The editorial bent has turned decidedly more liberal and news reports have become much less local and more liberally oriented with editorial decisions following the precedent of Gannett's mega paper, USAToday.

In fairness, the editorial staff maintains two decidedly Christian writers, Russ Pulliam and Lori Borgman. Pulliam is the scion of the paper's founding family, but his role on the editorial staff has been greatly reduced to general legislative and community commentary. Borgman writes a stay-at-home-mother oriented humor column which is in the Erma Bombeck tradition which sometimes espouses decidedly Christian ethical advice and insight.

The Indianapolis Star (history) was founded in 1903 and was brought to prominence after it was purchased in 1944 by Eugene C. Pulliam. The Pulliam family was a highly influential and conservative voice in the midwest for many years until Pulliam's son, Eugene S. Pulliam, died in 1999. Shortly thereafter, it was sold to Gannett Co.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Amnesty International Calls for Kidnapping of Pres. Bush, et. al.

We've heard much in the media about the assertion by Amnesty International that Guantanimo Bay is a "gulag." But Ed Morrisey found out through columnist John Leo that they are also calling on foreign governments to kidnap President Bush and other US Government officials for trial in International Criminal Court.
Captain's Quarters: "according to Leo at the end of his column, AI also issued a press release accompanying their annual report that the media mostly ignored. In that release, Amnesty International apparently called for other nations to kidnap George Bush, Donald Rumsfeld, and other American officials and haul them off to the ICC for prosecution on charges of crimes against humanity:"
Outrageous and greatly unreported!

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

"Howard Dean: The Windows 3.1 Of The Democratic Party"

I link this from Right Wing News mostly because of the byline. Good points as well.

Dizzy from Feminist Spin

MaxedOutMama takes a brief trip into the feminist mind.

...Thankfully she came out alive.

MSM Ignores American Flag Desecration. Laser on Quran Abuse

Hat tip to Michelle Malkin for giving us video and other links.

Tancredo Will Enter '08 Race if There Is "No Other Person" on Immigration

Politics1 and the Denver Post report that Colorado Cong. Tom Tancredo, R, will enter the Republican presidential primary race if no other candidate will stand up for immigration reform including strict border enforcement.
"It's such an odd thing to talk about," Tancredo told The Denver Post. But "if there is no other person ... then we have no choice" but to enter the presidential race.
Norman Ornstein, an American Enterprise Institute Fellow feels that though Tancredo would play the role of Don Quixote in any primary bid, bringing the issue to the forefront as a candidate would require Republican candidates to address the issue more directly.
"Even fringe presidential candidates end up with more airtime than members of Congress. It's quixotic if you think you've got a realistic chance, but not if your goal is to continue to get airtime and get the press to bring up these issues."
Tancredo has burned bridges in the Republican Party because he has not been afraid to excoriate elected officials in both parties for sitting on the sideline while thousands of illegal immigrants continue to stream across the Mexican border. Karl Rove in particular strongly rebuked him in 2004 because of Tancredo's strong criticism of the President over border policy during the Presidential campaign.

A Primary flavor is beginning to develop!

Tom Daschle to be Honored at Homosexual Awards Ceremony

Dakota Voice has the story.
Former United States Senator Tom Daschle (D-SD) will be honored at the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force Leadership Awards. . . .The National Gay & Lesbian Task Force's website further states, "Senator Daschle led the successful fight to defeat the Federal Marriage Amendment (FMA) in the U.S. Senate. In doing so, he put his 25-year career in Congress on the line to help wage one of the crucial battles in the history of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. FMA was defeated, but on Election Day 2004, Sen. Daschle became the first Senate party leader in 52 years to lose reelection — by 4,500 votes."
Need I say more?

Great news for future efforts to pass the Federal Marriage Amendment. Opposition to FMA is politically damaging by the opposition's own admission.

Tom Daschle to be Honored at Homosexual Awards Ceremony

Dakota Voice has the story.
Former United States Senator Tom Daschle (D-SD) will be honored at the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force Leadership Awards. . . .The National Gay & Lesbian Task Force's website further states, "Senator Daschle led the successful fight to defeat the Federal Marriage Amendment (FMA) in the U.S. Senate. In doing so, he put his 25-year career in Congress on the line to help wage one of the crucial battles in the history of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. FMA was defeated, but on Election Day 2004, Sen. Daschle became the first Senate party leader in 52 years to lose reelection — by 4,500 votes."
Need I say more?

Great news for future efforts to pass the Federal Marriage Amendment. Opposition to FMA is politically damaging by the opposition's own admission.

Congressman Wants to Stop ACLU Profit from First Amendment Cases

Congressman John Hostettler, R-IN, wants to remove the financial incentive organizations like the ACLU have to attack religious expression in the public square.
CitizenLink--Representative John Hostettler, R-Ind., has teamed with the American Legion to prevent the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and others like them, from strong arming defendants.

The Public Expression of Religion Act of 2005 (PERA) would prohibit attorneys' fees from being collected in cases against the establishment of religion clause. . . .

The legislation comes at a time when the ACLU is challenging the mention of "Jesus" in the Indiana legislature, the cross on the California state seal and prayer at graduation ceremonies across America. Regularly such cases never make it to court because of concern over the cost of attorney fees.
Kneejerk reactions to this sort of proposal will clearly point out that the "rights of victims to due process" will be infringed if they cannot obtain a competent attorney through fees which come through court judgments. But to the contrary, the ACLU with its 400,000 members, for example, brings in $44 million in donations to its organization.

If this law passes, it could also bring to the forefront the most onerous aspect of the current status of First Amendment law. It's what I call the "Malicious Ignorance Clause"; too much emphasis on "Congress shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion" and complete denial of the words "or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

This is not the first time Cong. Hostettler has introduced this bill. In 2003, it died in committee. The difference this time: he has the support of 2.7 million members of the American Legion.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Are the Numbers Really Against Robert Byrd?

With all due respect to the political insight of Dick Morris (and he deserves much), he is quite wrong about his belief that Cong. Shelley Moore Capito--D-WV has a chance to defeat Sen. Robert Byrd--D-WV. It is unlikely that he will come down to defeat when otherwise Republican business owners won't cough up the money to make the Republican machine work. The WV GOP was severly choked in 2004 because these businesses were unwilling to buck Democrats who held and wielded a serious threat of reprisal. In the aftermath, the GOP there is in shambles. More of that later.

Morris makes the following assertion:
Byrd, who still boats a 62-28 favorable-unfavorable ratio, may have met his match and master in Capito, who has a statewide rating of 57-35.
Sorry Dick. The 11% undecided in that poll will swing to Byrd precisely because of his 62% favorable. West Virginians will stay with what works before they move to Capito who cannot win in the Southern counties. She has a lackluster pro-life voting record rating lower than Democrat Cong. Nick Rahall who represents that strongly pro-life area of the state. And vote-buying in the southern counties (e.g. Lincoln, Logan, Wayne, Cabell et. al) still proceeds unchecked making it very difficult to gather needed votes (and significantly depressing Republican turnout).

Shelly Moore Capito has a family name as strong as Byrd. Her father, former Republican Governor Arch Moore, is incredibly popular in WV, even with his indictment, conviction and jail time served for vote buying years ago. Problem is, she isn't Robert Byrd. She (or anyone else for that matter) will have to earn the respect Bob Byrd still holds with many in the state. West Virginians still tend to break toward that with which they feel comfortable. They felt comfortable with a Texan over an East Coast Liberal in 2004. Will they feel equally comfortable with an up-and-coming "young lady" over the stalwart force of the "dependable" Byrd? The jury is out on that, but smart bets should be placed with Byrd.

One thing Shelley does well is mildly deprecating humor. In most of her campaign appearances in 2004, she announced her late arrival thus: "I'm sorry I didn't get here on time, but because I try to avoid roads named after Robert Byrd, got a little sidetracked." It was well stated and, as they say, "many a true word was spoken in jest."

Morris also postulates that national trends favor change in traditionally blue states that went strongly for Bush in 2004.
. . . West Virginia went for President Bush by 56-43 in 2004 and 52-46 in 2000, and voters who back the GOP nationally are getting less and less forgiving of their Democratic representatives and senators in Congress. As party-line voting increases in Washington and the well-publicized partisan feuds animate the body, voters are getting the point that as long as the legislators vote a straight party line, so should they.
There is some truth to this, but remember, the Democrat Gubernatorial candidate in 2004--and current Governor--, Joe Manchin won with 62% of the vote while Bush was getting his 56%. For those of you who have run political campaigns like myself, that is solid statistical proof that West Virginians still have a HUGE block of swing voters. And in West Virginia, they swing Democrat still unless they have a compelling reason to do otherwise.

Change is coming to WV sometime in the future but with a recent meltdown in the State GOP (read here and here--registration required), Republicans are not in a very good position to support any candidate unless support comes from outside the state and a tremendous grassroots operation is successfully carried out.

Two other factors:

First, Capito has been given good committee appointments recently in Congress which is a sign that leadership is giving her strong reasons to stay in her district (which is likely to be lost if she abandons it). So it all may be a moot point if she sits this one out.

Second, the current announced candidate, Hiram Lewis, came within a whisker of defeating Attorney General Darrell McGraw in 2004. This makes him a dark horse hopeful, though he benefited from a strong anti-McGraw turnout (related to strong opposition to his brother who went down to defeat for a Supreme Court seat that same year). That election proved that a strong vote against an opponent can bring Hiram close, but if he cannot give a good reason for people to vote FOR him, he can't get over the top.

One parting thought. Because Sen. Byrd is in failing health and therefore might have to abandon the seat, it may come down to open seat race. This would give a Republican a great opportunity to take the seat. But under such a scenario, look for Gov. Joe Manchin--a well-liked, proven statewide vote-getter who is endorsed by West Virginia Right-to-Life (an important endorsement in WV)--to appoint himself in place of Byrd. This will make it equally difficult for any Republican opponent.

I call this Senate seat to stay Democrat (Byrd or Manchin) with a 40% chance of a Republican upset.

(Disclosure: I worked for the WV GOP in 2004 as a paid statewide grassroots consultant).

"The Sky Is Falling!": MSM/Dems Implement Plan to Get Dean Out of Media

We have evidence that Democrats want to get Howard Dean out of the spotlight and don't want to allow Bush/Blair cooperation to show the President in a positive light.


NEW YORK Jun 7, 2005--'We are living in a time when the other side doesn't want us to see the facts. Facts are inconvenient facts about global warming, facts about mercury in the air, facts about people staying unemployed longer,' said Clinton, considered a Democratic contender for the presidency in 2008.
Plus THIS:
DRUDGE REPORT Tue Jun 07 2005 19:07:22 ET--A White House official who once led the oil industry's fight against curbs on greenhouse gases has repeatedly edited government climate reports in ways that play down links between such emissions and global warming, according to internal documents.

The NEW YORK TIMES is planning a Wednesday splash on the development, newsroom sources tell the DRUDGE REPORT.

Plus THIS: NYT--"Official Played Down Emissions' Links to Global Warming."
Plus THIS: Reuters--"World scientists say humans causing global warming."
Plus THIS: RedNova--"Global Warming Threat Growing."
Plus THIS: Michigan Daily--"Levin calls for Bush to act on global warming."
(All published within 18 hours of each other)

EQUALS Democrat/MSM spin cycle to clean up the Dean mess.

Dean Slips Once More

Howard Dean calls Republicans a "white, Christian party." Click here to listen.

Democrats are obsessed with race, like Southern Democrats in the first half of the 20th Century. Some things never change.

Featured Blog of the Day

Mystery Pollster provided a tremendous service during the 2004 elections. This is a "must see" source for wading through the polls coming out regularly. The expert analysis of polling accuracy you will find there is a tremendous help and the "CATEGORIES" section provides an excellent primer on polling practices.

Monday, June 06, 2005

How D-Day Would Be Reported Today

Hat Tip: Instapundit. Murdoc Online asks the question and received some interesting, and accurate in my opinion, answers.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

A.C.L.U. Shredding Documents

The New York Times reports that great concern is arising regarding the fact that the ACLU is shredding documents.
The American Civil Liberties Union has been shredding some documents over the repeated objections of its records manager and in conflict with its longstanding policies on the preservation and disposal of records.

The matter has fueled a dispute at the organization over internal operations, one of several such debates over the last couple of years, and has reignighted questions over whether the A.C.L.U.'s own practices are consistent with its public positions.
The apparent hypocrisy of this situation is evident as the ACLU has regularly called for records openness in government agencies.
In a speech to the Society of American Archivists last year, Nadine Strossen, the president of the A.C.L.U., said that at its inception in 1920, the civil liberties group arranged for the New York Public Library to archive its records and those of its predecessor organization.

"I'm especially impressed by how prescient the A.C.L.U.'s founders were in understanding the importance of preserving our organizational records," Ms. Strossen said.

In 2003, the Archivists Round Table of Metropolitan New York gave Ms. Linde an award for her role in helping draft and enact a public records law after Rudolph W. Giuliani, the former mayor of New York, moved records from his administration to a private institution.
As someone recently stated on FreeRepublic.com when the story was revealed there, "How very . . . Nixonian . .. of the ACLU."

Friday, June 03, 2005

Dick DeVos to Run for MI Governor in '06

We have a report from WOODTV.com that Dick DeVos will be running for Michigan Governor in 2006.
"At this point I am able to confirm that it is my intention and my plan to run for governor in '06. And we'll be announcing a campaign sometime down the road. But I wanted to, once a decision was made, just square up and tell people exactly where I'm at," DeVos told us. . . . "I'm looking forward to traveling around the state, as I already have all of my life . . . . I know how important it is to listen, to learn and then to make decisions," DeVos told us.
DeVos's wife, Betsy, is Chairman of the Michigan GOP. They have money and influence, and Michigan is a Blue state which longs to be Red. Should be an interesting run.

Quote of the Day: Fair Tax in the Federalist

Alexander Hamiltion has some interesting advice in Federalist 21 for those who support the Fair Tax (of which I am one).

"It is a singular advantage of taxes on articles of consumption that they contain in their own nature a security against excess. They prescribe their own limit, which cannot be exceeded without defeating the end purposed -- that is, an extension of the revenue. . . . If duties are too high, they lessen the consumption; the collection is eluded; and the product to the treasury is not so great as when they are confined within proper and moderate bounds. This forms a complete barrier against any material oppression of the citizens by taxes of this class, and is itself a natural limitation of the power of imposing them."
The fact is that the United States was originally funded by consumption taxes. Not until the passage of the 16th Amendment was the government allowed to collect taxes on incomes. And it's time we went back to the old standard (including repeal of the 16th Amendment).

Alexander Hamilton had it right. I don't think I could have argued better for a return to the fair tax. But, then, I do not posses the genius of Alexander Hamilton.

FOR FURTHER READING: Check out this article from NewsMax.com

Thursday, June 02, 2005

FEC v. Bloggers: Regulation Under Current Law Appropriate

La Shawn Barber stepped out on a limb by saying that bloggers who are paid by political organizations should be regulated per recommended FEC guidelines. I agree with her. The current campaign finance law would apply in such circumstance.

But McCain Feingold needs to be reformed. We wrongly got into a tizzy after the Nixon administration when massive gifts were given to his campaign which could not be traced. The problems could have been resolved if we had moved to a full-disclosure system with unlimited gifts. That is the type of reform I propose.

Individuals should have the ability to give unlimited cash and in-kind donations to any federal candidate. Businesses should be limited nationally to $25,000 donations per candidate. Allow PAC's to take unlimited donations from individuals with businesses and other organizations totally restricted from giving to them. All donations (cash and in-kind) should be given with full disclosure. Any organization which breaks the disclosure laws with malice should be subject to criminal penalties including jail time.

Open the system, but make it transparent to all. Then free speech will once again become king and politicians can be held fully accountable to the associations they make.
REGARDING THE FULL DISCLOSURE ISSUE: An article in the Denver Post highlights the amount of money quickly raised by Focus on the Family Action. They noted that such organizations do not have the same disclosure requirements as those regulated by the FEC--i.e. PAC's and 527's)--, and stated that some believe they should be required to provide disclosure. This is not the sort of thing I am talking about above. Remove limits from candidate's and Party organizations with full disclosure there. Maintain 501 c(3) and 501 c(4) designations with the current rules in place and allow PAC's and 527's to operate with limited donations and full disclosure.

Dutch Town Bans Blasphemy

The Dutch village of Staphorst, considered a "Bible Belt" town has banned swearing. Similar laws in Holland have been struck down by Dutch courts in the past.

Featured Blog of the Day: The National Guard Experience

Jean-Paul Boorda from The National Guard Experience sent me an email telling me about his post, The Golden Rules of Care Packages.

Jean-Paul is a National Guardsman stationed in Iraq. This is funny, must read stuff.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Jean-Paul is stationed in Afghanistan. Sorry JP

Nascent Newspaper Blogging

Jeff Quinton catalogs some attempts by media types to start their own blogs.

To date, traditional media is far removed from the "common people" and hesitant to dirty their hands with blogging "irresponsibility." Thus, early attempts reveal the latent horror within them as they wade into the blogsphere. Jeff Quinton led me to a sample in Brad Warthen's Blog which he links in his post.
Welcome to my Weblog, which begins with a series of disclaimers: First, I don’t know what I’m doing. I’m making this up as I go along. I could read other blogs and imitate them, but I don’t want to. I want this to be different. Second, I am bound to make mistakes as I do this – factual and otherwise. This is a much more hurried form of journalism than what I’m used to, and there is nobody paid to check behind me. So if you see mistakes, say something so I can fix them. Third, the opinions, observations, digressions and irrelevancies contained herein are my own, and should not be seen as reflecting upon the wisdom of The State’s editorial board in any way.
Poor Brad. We know it's tough to come down out of the Ivory Tower and mill about with us commoners. But worry not. You'll find we actually have bathtubs here too, but, sadly, no manicured nails.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Planned Parenthood Study Refutes "Abortions Are Up" Claim

Back before the 2004 elections, researcher Harold Stassen wrote an op-ed piece in which he claimed that abortions are increasing during the Bush Administration and were decreasing under his predecessor, Bill Clinton. This information was immediately and effectively refuted at the time, but it started a debate which President Bush's pro-abortion detractors have used to delegitimize the pro-life position. LifeNews.com reports that Planned Parenthood's research arm, The Alan Guttmacher Institute, has found that abortions actually decreased during the Bush administration.

Prof. Stassen's survey only reviewed abortion trends in 16 states while Guttmacher's data surveyed 44 as well as other significant statistical anomalies. This caused Stassen to send a memo to FactCheck.org stating that the Guttmacher study was "significantly better" than his.

Read more about the updated data on FactCheck.org's website here.

UPDATE: LifeNews.com has reported a statement from Dr. Randy O'Bannon of National Right to Life. O'Bannon lauds the Guttmacher study and appropriately chides Democrat operatives who took advantage of the errant Stassen study:
"Pro-abortion Democrats have been pushing the myth ever since the election that abortions had increased since Bush took office," he said. "Turns out not to have been true at all."

"Many of those in leadership in the Democratic party seem to have suddenly developed an interest in reducing abortion, but if they were sincere, they'd be supporting pro-life legislation and policies," Dr. O'Bannon added.

A Friend's Review of "Sith"

I've been telling everyone that my wife and I are going to see "Revenge of the Sith" for the last two weekends: it hasn't happened yet, and they laugh. Thankfully I'll be well prepared when I do finally go to the theatre. I posted a link to an interesting "commentary a couple weeks ago which my friend Erick Erickson shared at his site. Now Erick has seen the movie, and provides his own commentary here addressing in particular the supposed political message George Lucas intended to make. Erick says,
In the end, I do not take Star Wars to be a political commentary. But, if Lucas intended it to be an indictment of the right, he failed.
And as with the rest of the series, a sense of the excellency of goodness and the destructive capacity of evil is more prevelant than any rant against conservatives Lucas may intend.