Re: Daniel J. Flynn’s The Tentacles of Taxachusetts:
No, Mr. Flynn, I beg to differ with you on your first point.
“Hard times” don’t breed harebrained schemes. Electing intellectual lightweights with a poorly thought-out agenda, little or no contact with either reality or their constituents, little acquaintance with the truth, little respect for people who work hard to earn a living and pay their taxes, big booming voices, big immaculate hairdos, really big and frightening artificial smiles, and virtually no respect for the Constitution — probably due to not having read it — breeds harebrained schemes.
[Except for Nancy Pelosi, who does not have a big booming voice due to gender differences, but makes up for that by scoring markedly higher in all of the other qualifications named.]
— A. C. Santore
The next great tax will come once the government hijacks medical care. It will be very simple. Since the government will control healthcare, Barney Frank will decide that his finance committee controls that aspect of health care. He will decide the 30% tax increase levied to pay for our newly mediocre health care is insufficient, he will mandate the implanting of a small flow meter in every American. Those who refuse will be barred from even the most rudimentary medical care and those who comply will pay a $3.00 tax on each urination.
Congress will, of course, be exempt from this tax because they are the first American royalty. Congress will also be exempt from government run health care as well.
— Jay Molyneaux
Mr. Flynn is completely correct that cross jurisdictional taxation is un-Constitutional.
If only we still had a Constitution….
— Martin Owens
SO OUT OF CHARACTER
Re: Philip Klein’s Republicans Dithering on Health Care:
Republicans dithering? I’m shocked! Shocked, I tell you. After all the decisive and inspiring leadership we’ve seen on a broad spectrum of issues from the current Republican “leadership,” I just find this hard to believe.
The sheeple of this country have swallowed, hook, line and sinker, the absurd notion that by giving the federal government control over our health care system, health care is going to be made more affordable and more accessible. Now that that premise is accepted wisdom, all other “discussion” about the details of that government control is simply re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.
Federal government control over the health care decisions that used to be made between you and your health care provider is coming — and very soon. Once in place, it can never, ever, be removed.
Do you like the service that you get at your local post office or license bureau? Well, it’s coming soon to a hospital or doctor’s office near you. Enjoy!
— Keith Kunzler
GIVE ME MARRIAGE EQUALITY, OR GIVE ME DEATH
Re: David N. Bass’s Don’t Divorce the Marriage Issue:
“A better option is to remain true to the foundational principles of conservatism, of which traditional marriage and family are a critical plank. Conservatives can do a better job of nuancing the issue, but they should never forfeit the principle itself….The GOP needs to do some soul searching, no doubt. Part of that should be the acknowledgment that social conservatism in general, and marriage protection in particular, is not responsible for the party’s fading fortunes.”
I didn’t know that American conservatism was based on cranking out as many kids as you could. I thought it was based on freedom. Gay marriage may be a popular issue in some places and unpopular in others, but what conservatives aren’t willing to face is their own ideological inconsistency. You’re either for personal liberty or you’re just a member of a sort of Taliban Lite, trying to enforce your methods on others because you can’t countenance people not looking and acting like you.
Which will it be? Doesn’t the love between two people count? Shouldn’t people’s ability to express that be protected? Leftists know exactly where they want to go, even if where they want to go is wrong. But they are sure of their principles. The real problem with conservatives is that they have forgotten theirs. The gay marriage issue shouldn’t be imposed by courts. It should be decided by a free people through their votes and/or through their elected legislatures. But as a political movement, if conservatism cannot be self-consciously grounded in its own ideas of freedom — ideas that time after time have been shown to work and to be good — then it is just a run-of-the-mill cultural meme. It becomes a movement not unlike a Taliban Lite in which it is more important to play to people’s prejudices than to reach down and really consider what freedom means in America and why this is a worthy and stable goal. To cling to marriage being the definition of a man and a woman is to lose track of this. And those who suppose that heterosexuals will suddenly stop getting married if gay marriage is legalized are nuts. Legalizing gay marriage does not mean the end of marriage. It is simply the advancement of freedom.
If one really was concerned with protecting marriage, you would roll back as much government interference in people’s lives as you could. You would get rid of all the nanny-state incentives and support structures that undermine the normal and natural inclination towards marriage and that instead substitutes the state as the husband or parent.
Not standing boldly by their principles is what is killing conservatives. To make the argument for gay marriage is not to pander. It is to truly understand our American style of freedom.
— Brad Nelson
POLITICAL SCIENCE… LITERALLY
Re: Craig S. Lerner’s Risky Business:
The scientific community is in danger of losing its credibility with the bulk of Americans if they continue to hitch their wagon to the Jackass Party and its agendas. For at least the last 50 years science has become more of a religion separate and apart from the lesser beings on this planet than an academic pursuit of truth. I worked in the space program in the early to mid seventies and it wasn’t “consensus” that got the Apollo capsule to and from the moon nor gets the Shuttle off the pad and back down safely. There is no such thing as “consensus science.” Charlatans and con artists promote “consensus” hoaxes, as Craig Lerner outlines.
If we continue on this path of mixing politics with true science the day will come when a true crisis arrives and the general public has no faith in anything so-called scientists say and that could be fatal. True scientists aren’t interested in shouting down those that disagree with them, nor are they arrogant enough to believe that their theories can’t be wrong. The difference between a theory and true science is the proof or lack thereof. Far too many people, particularly politicians fail to understand the differences between inductive and deductive reasoning and its use as a substitute for scientific proof. Weather forecasting, climate and hurricane predictions all share the same problems: they are based on mathematical models built upon theories that don’t happen to be very accurate in the scheme of things. I can look at a simple precipitation radar map and predict three days out with enough accuracy to know it is going to rain on me while the weather service runs mathematical models on the most powerful computer systems in existence 24/7 trying to tell me right up to the last minute it will rain 1.2356 inches on Tuesday with 60% certainty (somewhere in my reporting area). The forecast changes every two hours… Likewise, the hurricane forecasters seem honestly disappointed that their forecasts don’t turn out as bad as they forecast just three months prior.
This is not science; it is a political agenda or religion for far too many. A broken clock is proving to be more reliable. The hoaxes put forth by the “scientific” community over the last 5 decades have done real damage to the pursuit of truth. Far too many people in the “community” are overly impressed with their “weight of paper” arguments and their own inflated self worth in the scheme of things. Those in the community that value truth and the positive attributes science can bring might want to step up to the plate before their fraternity becomes typecast like some of the world’s oldest professions or worse.
— Thom Bateman
Newport News, Virginia
LIVE BY THE SWORD
Re: Jeffrey Lord’s The Spanish Inquisition Meets The O’Reilly Factor:
My oh my what a tangled web we weave. It would appear that the incompetent judge and our less-than-illustrious speaker have found themselves tightly wound in the spider’s cocoon. Good for them, I hope they find it impossible to untangle themselves!
This pair of imbeciles makes a perfect quinella; put them in a two-man footrace and they would both run dead last!
— M.J. Casey
North Miami Beach, Florida
I read your story with interest. The part I didn’t like was the title. “The Spanish Inquisition” part could have been left out. It is a myth that should have died out a long time ago. The Spanish Inquisition was often the first law and order a Spanish town or city had other than a local prince yelling, “off with his head!” The vast majority of persons tried by the Inquisition were found not guilty. Less than one percent were sentenced to death and most of those had their sentences changed to prison terms. Overall your story was spoiled by a bad title that probably cost you readers.
— Michael Skaggs
THIS IS AMERICA, BY GOD
Re: Tom Bethell’s Population, Blessings, and God:
An old Jewish blessing, “May God bless you with enough that you don’t curse His name, but not so much that you for Him.”
America has prospered greatly. Now is not the time to forget how blessed we are or in whose purpose we were founded.
— Ira M. Kessel
Rochester, New York
A SLIPPERY SLOPE
Re: Ralph R. Reiland’s Students’ Confusion About Capitalism:
It’s an easy prediction to make: There will be a continued massive movement towards socialism as long as the word “budget” is a synonym for unfunded spending plan. The taxing of Americans continues unabated, the media is spinning it as a good and natural thing, and Mr. Obama is in the media 24/7 preaching doom and destruction if His Plan is not followed. In no uncertain terms, personal and professional destruction is promised to the dissenters.
As more private sector jobs are traded for public, as more wealth is destroyed for the public good, the faster we slide towards the final oblivion of the liberal dream. The elites that control the media, abetted by the teachers unions, have been inoculating our children for a good 20 years, and we have nearly two generations of nanny-state high school grads now in college who will be looking for the state to provide that which they cannot conceive of producing for themselves. There is no force on earth that can reverse this trend.
— Greg Mercurio
BORN TO BE WILD
Re: Henry Gekonde’s The New Hampshire Motorcycle Fetish:
It would seem that ignorance is not bliss! The author is exactly the type of urban dweller who would ban guns. Why? Because I don’t have one.
My motorcycles have carried me many miles in many countries. They are my therapy. They also have been loud. Why? Because people like the author pay no heed to us so we warn them we are there with high beams and noise in the hope they won’t kill us. He prefers the homogenized, white milk flavor of life. My life works better with jalapenos and Tabasco sauce.
While the author spends his vacation, perhaps at “Mahther’s Vineyahd,” discussing the vicissitudes of life as an elite who must do our thinking for us; that we are too “well, dumb,” to do it for ourselves, motorcyclists are on the road. There is America out there. There are vistas, smells and people who add the flavor to life. We ride the “twisties” with the same verve as the author makes his fresh squeezed orange juice. In fact very often the twisties are so twistie that you go back and ride them again. For the ride is the destination, a place is just where you spend the night.
Yes “motorcycles are everywhere” and what provokes you is that faint stirring of masculinity that echoes somewhere in your DNA. It yells at us and whispers to you: “Take a risk! Get some adrenalin moving inside you! Do something the purpose of which is solely to exhilarate you.”
Oh yeah! Put your significant other on the back. Your sex life will reignite like a bonfire.
— Jay Molyneaux
AMERICA 2035 OR WILL YOU REMEMBER?
I knew a country long ago
Where you could say what you wanted to say.
You could work where you wanted,
Your ambition undaunted,
And you could pray how you wanted to pray.
It’s an era we’ll never retrieve.
Young people now will not believe
That that fairy tale land
Is the place they now stand.
Their minds simply cannot conceive
Of a time out of mind,
But my memory can find
Those happy days.
The music still plays
When I close my eyes and remember…
— Mimi Evans Winship