THE REAL THING
Re: P. David Hornik's Sharansky's Other Message:
Any close follower of the thought and work of Natan Sharansky knows that P. David Hornik has precisely reflected his true views. Sharansky is without question the most foreseeing and able Israeli politician with the widest grasp of the international arena. His vision for a world living in democracy by no means is a pie-in-the-sky one and he is especially careful to see that the "pretence of democracy" is not taken for the real thing. This is why he has been so critical of not yet nascent Palestinian "democracy" which engages not only in hateful anti-Semitic incitement but barbaric executions of its own people.
-- Shalom Freedman
BRAINS AND FREEDOM
Re: James Bowman's Coming Clean:
Thank James Bowman for taking on the liars at Time who twist their feminist voting base fantasies and warp reality.
About those women who insist men and women are the same (if we simply rearrange reality to fit our fantasies), who shrilly mocked America's brave rep to the UN's "women's conference" last weekend for daring to stand up for the unborn, who threw childish temper tantrums when a male in a position of authority even dared ask a question that any real scientist confronting the issue of women in science would of course ask, and investigate, who turned generations of weak girls against their fathers, and brothers, and spawned a world of hags and witches, weak, mean, bullies who loudly demand we believe their UN-reality, while they mock those who quietly live with self-awareness, decency, courage -- true, strong women and role models.
I made up with my father before he died, but am very ashamed of years of my spoiled rotten behavior, and the self-centered betrayal of my brothers, male co-workers, and friends. Wanting to be treated with respect is what every boy and girl, man and woman wants. Missing from the "Women's Studies" and UN Women's Conferences, and NOW website is the TRUTH: there are consequences for actions, and words -- and respect is EARNED.
Today's whining girls in women's bodies -- demanding what they didn't earn, and pushing an angry, dishonest worldview on another generation of girls and boys, sowing hate and bitterness and arrogance -- deserve scorn, as do we weak children who followed them to hell.
YES, of course men and women have different brains and natures....and YES, we were created this way.
(On better days, I remember that the feminists are taking orders from the enemy, blindly enslaved to a very cruel master, and can find a small amount of pity for them -- and for myself.)
I've found this disparity between what "society" demands that we want to do and what we really want to do in more arenas than Boys v. Girls. I am, personally, a girl who was saved from a lifetime of misery by Women's Liberation making it at least marginally acceptable for a girl to be passionate about auto mechanics and wholly uninterested in Tupperware parties, not to mention totally unmoved by that deadliest of threats, "If you do that, no man will ever want to marry you." However, a younger sister (now about to celebrate her 30th anniversary and become a grandmother for the first time, both of which are part of her lifelong dream) has managed to live the life of the 1950s that Women's Liberation has tried relentlessly since the early 1970s to prevent women from either living or desiring to live. And she is being joined by more and more women who were given the choice between law school and full time home and motherhood, and decided their mothers didn't have it so badly, after all.
In my old neighborhood in the South, old time liberals are finding to their horror that black families prefer neighborhood schools, even if the school is 98% black, to having their children ride a bus for three hours for the privilege of sitting next to a white child. Likewise, Spanish-speaking parents are confounding West Coast liberals by demanding that their children NOT be taught in Spanish; they want their children immersed in English and the sooner the better.
The difficulty in this whole "liberation" thing, to my rather jaundiced eyes, is that after people are given a choice, other people who fought for them to have that right are displeased with the choice they make. Because they have so much invested in the hypothesis that, given a choice, everyone would want what they want, they are forced to make up wild and crazy reasons why their hypothesis appears to be false without admitting that it is in fact false.
Personally I never had the least interest in demanding that all women take up a career in motor racing. All I wanted was the freedom not to take up a career in marriage and family. Could it not be true that other women faced with the same choice have made the choice that's right for them, too?
-- Kate Shaw
I find it extremely interesting that today's PC police have determined that all sex differences are societal, due to upbringing, etc., and not due to genetic differences between the sexes.
Except for one -- gays are hardwired that way. Gee, who could imagine that?
-- Abraham Shapiro
Just a reminder that Erik Erikson claimed to have identified different approaches to space by the two sexes.
-- R.L.A. Schaefer
Re: George Neumayr's Cowardly Lions:
Thank you very much for your article this morning, "Cowardly Lions." You nailed it. I am far more frustrated these days by Republicans in Congress, especially the Senate, than I am by Democrats. I am used to and expect rapid socialism from the left. It's what defines them. Republicans, however, once elected seem only to be concerned with reelection and think the way to do that is moving left. It makes no sense and I am left fighting the feeling, "Why bother?"
-- Mike Torrence
Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Oh, my! And most certainly we shouldn't pay any attention to that man behind the curtain.
-- Dennis Sevakis
Years ago, William F. Buckley said something to the effect that he would rather be governed by citizens randomly selected from the telephone book than by the Harvard faculty. I'm starting to think the same of our Congress which does its best work when taking money away from hard-working Americans and giving it to special interests. The Republicans have proven to be bigger spenders and providers of pork than the Democrats ever were. Who would have thought?
-- Stephen Goth
Once again astute observations by Mr. Neumayr. My question would be: Where are the convictions that have been borne out over the past 50 years? There is a horrendous loss of jobs every time the minimum wage is raised. This is a provable fact. The jobs lost are lost by the people who can least afford to be out of work. This is a provable fact. Kennedy, or as I like to think of him, Senator Slug, provides the Senate Republicans with an unerringly correct barometer of what is right and what is wrong. If Kennedy proposed it, it is usually bad for the country, and if it has anything to do with jobs, a subject with which Kennedy has no personal experience since he has never had one, it is ALWAYS bad for the country.
As a long time football coach, I have to say that the Senate Republicans remind me of those teams that come out of the locker room after half time, with a big lead, and are determined NOT TO LOSE rather than to WIN. They play so cautiously in the second half, abandoning all that gave them the lead in the first place, and they end up losing like some self-fulfilling prophecy.
-- Joseph Baum
Newton Falls, Ohio
Mr. Neumayr's latest article regarding the cowardice of elected Republicans is spot on in every way. My only complaint is that the two most egregious examples of his point, he fails to even mention.
I recently received a "survey" supposedly from Dennis Hastert regarding my opinions on various issues. The missive was, in fact, just another plea for donations to elect more Republicans to the House and Senate. I sent it back with the notation that they would receive not one dime of my money until the Senate rules have been change to specify 51 votes only to confirm judicial nominees and ALL of the previously filibuster nominees have received an up or down vote on their nominations. Sen. Frist seems to have not been able to summon up the fortitude to do anything but threaten verbally with exactly zero follow up or enforcement.
The second example of cowardice is/was the Senate leadership's total inability to either force Sen. Specter to operate in a Republican friendly manner or deny him the Judiciary Committee Chairmanship. Anyone that seriously believed that he would live up to his promises to the Republican caucus in order to get the Chair, is simply too gullible to be allowed away from home without a chaperone. Again, Sen. Frist has displayed the lack of fortitude to force Specter into line to get and keep his chairmanship.
Not one more dime of my money to the Republicans in any form or fashion until they successfully complete testosterone replacement therapy or grow those appendages that produce and/or release said substance. Sometimes I think that the liberal RINOs in the elected GOP ranks are really just Democrat moles, as in Specter, Collins, Chafee, Snowe, Hagel, McCain, et al.
-- Ken Shreve
Pour it on the Republicans. They need a swift kick you know where.
-- Patricia Kenner
Re: Wlady Pleszczynski's All the Fixin's:
When I heard President Bush say "fixin" that day at the White House -- it gave me pause. On the one hand I just smiled and thought: Listen to the President speaking "Southern" right there on my television -- and on the other hand I was reminded how I have tried to extinguish that word from my children's vocabulary... it doesn't sound very "educated."
Thank you for that great column that reminded me of something else all together -- and that is that President Bush has such an ability to convey so much meaning with so few words -- and what a contrast to that pompous, elitist, long-winded Senator Kerry, who has the ability to drone on and on and on and on and on without saying anything of significance.
-- Cathy Thorpe
OUT OF THE LOOP
Re: Reid Collins's John Dillinger and Martha:
Please inform Mr. Collins that the infamous Biograph Theatre is on Lincoln Avenue, just northwest of the intersection of Halsted and Fullerton. Although at the time of Dillinger's death, several movie theatres were on or around State Street in downtown Chicago, the Biograph is a neighborhood theatre about 3.5 miles northwest of downtown. No big deal, just some fine tuning for the always enjoyable Mr. Collins.
-- David P. Bennett
DO AS I SAY, NOT AS I INVEST
Re: Patrick Hynes's Bias Claws Back:
I doubt you could find a single opponent of Private Investment Accounts who does not have his own funds invested in the private sector.
So the operable question is what is their excuse to deny a comfortable retirement to workers, in order to save Social Security, which is a bad deal anyway you cut it. If the 15.3% FICA of a $20,000 (average) worker were invested at 7%, the worker would be a millionaire after 45 years. (Notice I don't break it down into 6.4%, 6.4% and 2.9% -- it's all coming from the same pocket.)
Two things Bush should do: Throw back into Democrat faces their hypocrisy in what they say about investments; second, he must explain that to not start phasing out Social Security is "pay me now, or pay me much more later" for taxpayers. It will have to be done by borrowing, no matter what.
-- G.B. Hall
Re: George Neumayr's Constitution Killers:
George Neumayr's trenchant criticism that far too many of the decrees of the Supremes either ignore and/or change the Constitution as their legal tether struck me as indicative of his passion for the texts and traditions of our law. Specifically, in the case of Roper vs. Simmons, Neumayr energetically condemned the Court's majority ruling that "evolving standards of decency" -- whatever they are -- forbid execution of a 17 year old, even of a miscreant such as Christopher Simmons. Neumayr's brief was well written and direct, dissecting the issues involved, but at the same time, revealing a serious concern for the future of U.S. constitutional law. Somewhere, I had heard and read that before.
To read the Court's decision in Roper is to wonder whatever happened to U.S. constitutional jurisprudence. Joking aside, Justice Kennedy's majority opinion is too laughable to be serious: for example, he cites the U.N. Convention for the Rights of a Child (remember, we are talking of a 17 year old here) which contains the express prohibition of the execution of a juvenile under 18. That the U.S. never ratified that treaty is no impediment to Kennedy's diktat speaks volumes. On the other hand: "Though the views of our own citizens are essentially irrelevant ...those of other nations and the so-called international community take center stage." Sounds like a Neumayr quote to me.
"Words have no meaning if less than 50% of the death penalty States can constitute a national consensus." A Neumayr bon mot?
And, finally: "If juries cannot make appropriate determinations in cases involving murderers under 18, in what other kinds of cases will the Court find jurors delinquent?" Sounds like vintage Neumayr.
It came to me, to quote Mr. Jefferson, "like a fire bell in the night," that George Neumayr is The Spectator's Justice Scalia, the author of all the above quotations, for both would apply the same legal principles, texts and traditions of our jurisprudence to decisions of our highest court. Let it be said, clearly and unequivocally, that there is no higher praise that can be proffered.
-- Vincent Chiarello
I have just finished reading your article "Constitution Killers" and I feel like the schoolboy with his arm stuck up in the air, bouncing up and down in his chair while teacher looks for someone else to call on. The evil you complain of is something that has bothered me for more than 20 years, ever since I read Raoul Berger's Government By Judiciary -- and for almost as long, a remedy has seemed obvious to me. Rather than merely complain about it, "We the People" can make judicial activism and all its works, from Roper v. Simmons to Miranda v. Arizona to Roe v. Wade, float up to that big emanating penumbra in the sky.
You write, "The Supreme Court has been holding a de facto constitutional convention for decades, ripping up the old one and writing a new one without the consent of the people. A fitting punishment for this act of hubris will come when the chaos that their own example of lawlessness has set in motion consumes them in impeachment trials or worse." But before things come to such a pass, isn't it possible for the people to intervene in a more constructive way? Why not devise a constitutional amendment, based on the words of Chief Justice John Marshall and the founding fathers, instructing the justices that they must perform their work as Marshall did, and as Madison, Hamilton, Jefferson and Washington thought they should: as interpretation of a historical document, not husbandry of a "growing, evolving" one?
That's what I advocate at www.fairamendment.us -- an amendment mandating what Marshall called a "fair construction" of the Constitution. The idea is to restore the peopleâ€™s right of self-government, not just on this issue or that one, but on all of them -- the death penalty, school prayer, pornography, homosexuality, abortion, etc. -- where the people's views have more in common with those of the framers than with those of todayâ€™s judicial mandarins.
-- Karl Spence