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On Evil

19 Mar

“Know what is evil, however much worshipped it may be.  Let the man of intelligence not fail to recognize it, . . . because it cannot . . . hide its core;  slavery does not lose its infamy, however noble the master.”

— Baltasar Graciàn, Spanish Jesuit (1601-1658)

Not a new thought — rather, a timeless one, as demonstrated by this 400-year-old proverb.  Very similar instruction found in the Bible.  Be vigilant in identifying evil for what it is.

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Self-Inflicted Victimology a Mental Disorder?

9 Mar

The following is an excerpt from a column by Mychal Massie, titled “Black Racism Is a Mental Disorder”.

Mychal Massie is an ordained minister, and was founder  of the non-profit “In His Name Ministries.” He is the former National Chairman of the conservative black think tank, Project 21-The National Leadership Network of Black Conservatives and a former member of its parent think tank, the National Center for Public Policy Research.

The complete column can be found at http://mychal-massie.com/premium/black-racism-is-mental-disorder/

 

Excerpt:

I am reaching the conclusion that just as liberalism is a mental disorder so, too, is the reflexive apoplexy of many blacks who are quick to accuse whites of being racist. The majority of blacks in America today need to take a strong regard of themselves in the mirror. They must ask themselves how well they are being served by self-inflicted victimology, self-segregation, self-limiting behavior, and a rejection of modernity. They must ask themselves how the aforementioned behaviors make them feel.

Black Americans as a near whole are the angriest people both individually and collectively that there are in the United States, if not in the world. And the primary causal factor of their angst is what nebulous white people are doing to them.

The tragedy is that it’s not the whites; it is they who are holding themselves back. But in the case of victimology, there must be an oppressor because without same there cannot be a victim. Specific to that point, without white scapegoats their anger would have to be turned toward themselves. Without whites as scapegoats they would have to face the truth that they are their own worst enemy. They would also be forced to face the truth that the very liberals they support are committed to eroding the fabric of their future families.

[End of excerpt]

Drip, Drip, Drip . . . The Sound of Freedom Slowly Being Lost — and It’s Our Own Fault

5 Mar

From a Dr. Thomas Sowell column titled “Freedom Is Not Free”, warning us against a government that continually pushes the Constitution aside to achieve ideological goals.  The full column can be found at

http://www.creators.com/opinion/thomas-sowell/freedom-is-not-free.html

Excerpt: [bracketed material is mine]

It doesn’t matter what rights you have under the Constitution of the United States, if the government can punish you for exercising those rights [through IRS, FCC, and NSA targeting, indoctrination through Common Core, through nitpicking prosecutions of opposition, etc].

And it doesn’t matter what limits the Constitution puts on government officials’ power, if they can exceed those limits without any adverse consequences [as in effectively making and changing laws within the Executive Branch].

In other words, the Constitution cannot protect you, if you don’t protect the Constitution with your votes against anyone who violates it. Those government officials who want more power are not going to stop unless they get stopped.

As long as millions of Americans vote on the basis of who gives them free stuff, look for their freedom — and all our freedom — to be eroded away, bit by bit. Our children and grandchildren may yet come to see the Constitution as just some quaint words from the past that people once took seriously.

[End of excerpt]

Simple Prescription for Eliminating “Poverty” in America

2 Feb

Mona Charen, one of my favorite columnists, recently wrote the following paragraphs about the poor and unemployed in a piece that can be found in full at http://www.creators.com/opinion/mona-charen/will-anyone-watch-tonights-speech-why.html

I think this is very well said – enjoy.  [I put “Poverty” in quotes in my title because I have serious concerns about how loosely we define poverty in this country — there are probably a few billion people in this world who would feel as though they were solidly in the middle class if they were as well off as most of the folks we have arbitrarily defined as “living in poverty”.]

Excerpt from Ms. Charen:

Most economists agree that increasing the minimum wage has a tendency to discourage hiring. Second, most people who earn minimum wage are not heads of households. Third, 80 percent are not poor. Fourth, most receive a raise within 12 months. Fifth, the states containing half the population already have minimum wages above the federal level.

What the soft shoe about income inequality and declining upward mobility is meant to disguise is that Obama has presided over an economy that is providing diminishing opportunities for work. People who work full time are almost never poor. The Current Population Survey of the Census Bureau found that among full-time workers, the poverty rate in 2013 was 2.9 percent. Most of those who are poor are not working at all or are working only part time.

Long-term unemployment is demoralizing for the jobless and expensive for taxpayers. Rather than attempt to set wages from Washington, Obama’s entire focus ought to be on removing obstacles to hiring. . . .

Obama will boast that he has a “pen and a phone.” He can use his pen to relax some of the job-depressing regulations his administration has imposed, particularly in the health, financial and energy sectors. He can use his phone to approve the Keystone pipeline. And he could use his influence to extol the essential habits of success, without which more and more Americans will fail to flourish. As the Annie E. Casey Foundation reported years ago, if Americans do three simple things, they will not be poor: 1) graduate from high school , 2) get a job and 3) wait until marriage to have their first child.

[End of excerpt]

Those Terrible, Uncaring Conservatives . . .

7 Jan

David Limbaugh, in his recent column titled “The Left’s Latest Mantra:  Income Inequality”, besides addressing the left’s unjustified claims to the high ground on income inequality, has this to say about the liberal world view in general.  I thought it was well stated.  The whole column can be read at

http://www.creators.com/opinion/david-limbaugh/the-lefts-latest-mantra-income-inequality.html

Excerpt:  [Emphasis is mine]

Whether or not liberals are able to process the reality that their programs have failed, they will not abandon them, because class warfare and government dependency programs are their ticket to power. CNN’s Candy Crowley unwittingly admitted as much when she asked Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker why any unemployed American or minimum wage worker would become a Republican.

It’s not that conservatives don’t care about the poor. It’s that we do care about the poor — and everyone else. We believe that our free market solutions generate economic growth, stimulate upward mobility and improve the economic lives of far more people, including the poor and middle class, than any other system. History vindicates us.

The left will always win the “look at how much I care about you” contest. But it loses in the “actually caring” department because at some point, people have to be presumed to have intended the damaging results their policies have consistently caused.

[End of excerpt]

Differences between Income Groups Clarified

7 Jan

From PA Pundits – International

“It is the manners and spirit of a people which preserve a republic in vigor. A degeneracy in these is a canker which soon eats to the heart of its laws and constitution.” –Thomas Jefferson (1781)

Columnist John C. Goodman noted recently:

“In a study for the National Center for Policy Analysis, David Henderson found that there is a big difference between families in the top 20 percent and bottom 20 percent of the income distribution:

Families at the top tend to be married and both partners work. Families at the bottom often have only one adult in the household and that person either works part-time or not at all:

In 2006, a whopping 81.4 percent of families in the top income quintile had two or more people working, and only 2.2 percent had no one working. By contrast, only 12.6 percent of families in the bottom quintile had two or more people working; 39.2 percent had no one working. …

Having children without a husband tends to make you poor. Not working makes you even poorer. And there is nothing new about that. These are age old truths. They were true 50 years ago, a hundred years ago and even 1,000 year ago. Lifestyle choices have always mattered.”

————————————————————————————-

I daresay, also, that people in the top 20% of the economic distribution also paid more attention to getting a solid education than those in the bottom 20%, and probably grew up in a two-parent family.  One could argue that they started with an advantage, but at some point we have to bury that excuse and start strongly emphasizing and focusing on family values and the importance of education among the bottom 20%.  I think this is the only way to improve the upward mobility of this group.

Millions More on Medicaid? Great! Or Not

7 Jan

Mona Charen, in a recent column titled “Welcome to Medicaid for All”, explains why the millions of additional Medicaid enrollees under the Obamacare law just isn’t such a great thing.  I have excerpted some main points below.  The full column can be found at

http://www.creators.com/opinion/mona-charen/welcome-to-medicaid-for-all.html

Bolding and brackets are mine.

[Excerpt begins]

The Washington Post’s Ezra Klein has found what he thinks is a bright spot amid the gloomy Obamacare news. . . .  Klein reports that Obamacare’s “biggest success” is that 4 million new enrollees signed up for Medicaid as of November. . . .

Sorry, but the expansion of dependence on government is never cause for rejoicing. Conservatives acknowledge that a safety net is necessary for the poor, but we regard only the number of people leaving a government program like Medicaid as cause for celebration, not adding to the numbers who receive benefits. Klein is hardly alone. . . .

Why is it terrible news that millions more people are signing up for Medicaid? . . . [A] few of the reasons:

Medicaid is one of the entitlements whose growth endangers national solvency. . . .  The growth in health care spending was one of the rationales for Obamacare, but expanding Medicaid spending simply contributes to the problem.

Medicaid is plagued by fraud. . . .  [examples follow]

Medicaid is not just a program for the poor; it’s a poor program. Reimbursement rates for doctors, dentists and other professionals are so low under Medicaid that enrollees have difficulty finding care.

Having health insurance does not equate with having medical care. . . . The startling news is that Medicaid enrollees fare worse on health outcomes than those with no health coverage at all.

Expanding Medicaid was sold on the premise that uninsured people were driving up health care costs by waiting until they were very sick before seeking care and thus overburdening emergency rooms. If the near poor had Medicaid coverage, the argument went, they would see doctors before their conditions became critical and required expensive emergency room treatment.

But research on Oregon’s program, published in the journal Science, found . . . that Medicaid patients used emergency rooms 40 percent more than similarly situated adults who lacked health insurance. . . .

An earlier analysis of Oregon’s data found that having a Medicaid card did not improve health outcomes. . . .

Medicaid is a poor program because it promises benefits but squeezes provider reimbursement to keep costs down. The result is rationing. The poor are forced to wait in long lines for treatment . . . .  Medicaid is also the model for Obamacare — top-down price-fixing and mandates from Washington.

There are alternatives . . . . Klein’s happy talk notwithstanding, there are no “successes” in Obamacare. Left alone, it will remake the entire health care system in Medicaid’s image.

[End of excerpt]