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Friday, December 16, 2005

Ten Reasons: The Words That Make Us Wince
An interesting discussion developed at this blog over a question I posed over at Amy Welborn's blog: what words send shivers down your spine when you hear them because of their usual connotation, rather than their actual meaning. I gave the word "fellowship" as an example; when used in Catholic circles nowawdays, it usually is a flag for something spiritually and intellectually vapid.

The discussion brings forth many other excellent examples.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

"Liberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people...of the characters and conduct of their rulers." —John Adams

"We have the right, as individuals, to give away as much of our own money as we please in charity; but as members of Congress we have no right so to appropriate a dollar of the public money." —Davy Crockett

"To live in the presence of great truths and eternal laws, to be led by permanent ideals—that is what keeps a man patient when the world ignores him, and calm and unspoiled when the world praises him." —Honore De Balzac

"Economic ignorance, misconceptions and superstition drive us toward totalitarianism because they make us more willing to hand over greater control of our lives to politicians. That results in a diminution of our liberties." —Walter Williams

"Because investors and companies base investment plans on future prospects, policies that improve the long-term outlook promise immediate gains for the economy's weakest links—the stock market and business investment." —Alan Reynolds

"The Terrell Owenization of the Democrat Party is pretty much complete. Selfish, media-hogging, and utterly unconcerned about the impact of what they are doing to their team, the Dean-Reid-Pelosi Party has thrown its ongoing collective temper tantrum for months now." —Jay Bryant

"Why, pray tell, are liberals who want everyone to be liberal considered moral and moderate, but Christians who want everyone to be Christian considered 'zealots' and 'bigots'?" —Dennis Prager

"Ninety-six percent of Americans celebrate Christmas. Spare me the diversity lecture." —William Donohue

"To this day, Democrats have yet to offer a coherent strategy for winning the war in Iraq, and it is clear that they have none. Their attacks on Bush's 'failed' strategy have rung hollow all these years because they never had anything better to offer. And now their top leaders have revealed that their real goal all along was not to win, but to cut and run. They only waited this long to announce it because they have concluded that the poll numbers finally are in their favor. While Americans disapprove of the Bush administration's execution of the Iraq war effort, will they really embrace surrender as the alternative? Howard Dean and Nancy Pelosi think so. We don't. The American people, rightly disturbed by serious administration mistakes, still want America to win this war. Unfortunately, the Democrats are quickly removing themselves as a serious foreign policy alternative to the Republicans, and that is damaging not only to them, but to the republic." —New Hampshire Union Leader

Jay Leno... The President of Pakistan has announced that they have killed a top al-Qa'ida leader. On the news they said that this leader ranked somewhere between the number three and the number five man. I'm going out on a limb here—wouldn't that make him the number four guy? ... The White House announced they sent out 1.4 million Christmas cards this year. When Bill Clinton was president, he sent out twice that number of cards. Of course, that was for Valentine's Day. ... Al Sharpton is getting his own show on CBS. I believe it's called "The Amazing Race Card." ... The big controversy this year is about calling Christmas trees holiday trees and trying to take religion out of the holidays. I was watching one of these cable news shows about this and they had on an atheist who said they were against "organized" religion. And while they were talking, they had on the screen the name of the atheist organization. So they were against organized religion but organized atheism is apparently ok

December 13, 2005 (202) 224-2633


Standing Before Capitol Christmas Tree, Lawmakers Will Call for Raising the Minimum Wage

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA), Reps. Steny Hoyer (D-MD) and George Miller (D-CA) will stand before the Capitol Christmas Tree on Wednesday to discuss the true meaning of Christmas: hope, generosity, and goodwill toward others. In this spirit, the lawmakers will call on Congress to raise the national minimum wage before leaving for the year. They will release a report from the Center for Economic and Policy Research detailing the difficulty that families living on the minimum wage have in making ends meet.

WHAT: Press conference to discuss 'true meaning of Christmas' and the minimum wage

WHO: Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA), Congressman Steny Hoyer (D-MD)- House Democratic Whip, Congressman George Miller (D-CA), Heather Boushey- Economist for Center for Economic and Policy Research

WHERE: West Front of the U.S. Capitol Building in front of the Capitol Christmas Tree (Between the West Front steps and the Capitol Christmas Tree)

WHEN: Wednesday, December 14, 2005, 10:15 a.m. ET
So, the true meaning of Christmas is about increasing the minimum wage?

I seem to remember Christmas being something about God becoming Man.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Townhall.com :: Columns :: The poet who took on LBJ by George Will
McCarthy's insurgency, the most luminous memory of many aging liberals, would today be impossible -- criminal, actually -- thanks to the recent "reform" most cherished by liberals, the McCain-Feingold campaign regulations. McCarthy's audacious challenge to an incumbent president was utterly dependent on large early contributions from five rich liberals.

Stewart Mott's $210,000 would be more than $1.2 million in today's dollars.

McCain-Feingold codifies two absurdities: large contributions are inherently evil, and political money can be limited without limiting political speech. McCain-Feingold criminalizes the sort of seed money that enabled McCarthy to be heard. Under McCain-Feingold's current limit of $2,100 per contributor, McCarthy's top five contributors combined could have given just $10,500, which in 1968 dollars would have been just $1,834.30. But, then, McCain-Feingold was written by incumbents to protect what they cherish: themselves.

Townhall.com :: Columns :: The media's war by Thomas Sowell
The media seem to have come up with a formula that would make any war in history unwinnable and unbearable: They simply emphasize the enemy's victories and our losses.

Losses suffered by the enemy are not news, no matter how large, how persistent, or how clearly they indicate the enemy's declining strength.

What are the enemy's victories in Iraq? The killing of Americans and the killing of Iraqi civilians. Both are big news in the mainstream media, day in and day out, around the clock.

Has anyone ever believed that any war could be fought without deaths on both sides? Every death is a tragedy to the individual killed and to his loved ones. But is there anything about American casualty rates in Iraq that makes them more severe than casualty rates in any other war we have fought?

On the contrary, the American deaths in Iraqi are a fraction of what they have been in other wars in our history. The media have made a big production about the cumulative fatalities in Iraq, hyping the thousandth death with multiple full-page features in the New York Times and comparable coverage on TV.
Our troops can kill ten times as many of the enemy as they kill and it just isn't news worth featuring, if it is mentioned at all, in much of the media. No matter how many towns are wrested from the control of the terrorists by American or Iraqi troops, it just isn't front-page news like the casualty reports or even the doom-saying of some politicians.

The fact that these doom-saying politicians have been proved wrong, again and again, does not keep their latest outcries from overshadowing the hard-won victories of American troops on the ground in Iraq.

The doom-sayers claimed that terrorist attacks would make it impossible to hold the elections last January because so many Iraqis would be afraid to go vote. The doom-sayers urged that the elections be postponed.

But a higher percentage of Iraqis voted in that election -- and in a subsequent election -- than the percentage of Americans who voted in last year's Presidential elections.
There has never been the slightest doubt that we would begin pulling troops out of Iraq when it was feasible. Only time and circumstances can tell when that will be. And only irresponsible politicians and the media think otherwise.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Enjoying Freedom Every Day: What is an American? Something to Ponder
Francisco Gonzalez has a good post up about what an American is. Apparently written by an Austrailian dentist.

Laffey vs. Chafee - The first skirmish in a very important war
After 10 years of controlling Congress, Washington Republicans have an identity crisis. It was Republicans who gave us a farm bill that only a Soviet central planner could love; a campaign-finance reform bill that expands government's unconstitutional restrictions on speech; a prescription-drug entitlement program that Lyndon Johnson could only have dreamed of; and a transportation bill with more than 40-times as many pork projects it took to earn Reagan's veto. So, we ask a fair question: Is Reagan's vision of limited government--the fundamental principle that brought Republicans to power--still part of the Republican identity, or has it been abandoned in favor of the seductive power of controlling unlimited government?

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