In the meantime, while I will be off print-wise next week, I will have a column in this Sunday's Times about the Penn Delco School District and its weird treatment of the Aston Valley Baseball League.
Czech it out!
Friday, June 26, 2009
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Following the decision, the victim’s family issued a statement that “there is no winner in the outcome of this tragedy, only two families who have lost their son and brother.”No blood lust. No anger. Just sadness and class. Makes you want to cry.
The statement handed out by the victim’s father, John Cunningham, expressed “no ill will toward the Steve family” and stated it will “continue to pray for them as well as Ramir.”
This is a man who embodies the opposite of the courage to act. His appalling ignorance of history prompted him to claim at his press conference that "the Iranian people … aren't paying a lot of attention to what's being said … here." On the contrary, from their jail cells in the Gulag, Soviet dissidents took heart from what was being said here--as all dissidents dream that the leader of the free world will be prepared to speak and act in their defense.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
It is inexplicable that the BGH values the personal rights of teachers less than an anonymous assessment of teachers by students on the Internet," Association president Josef Kraus said, referring to the federal court.It is very explicable. It's called free speech and its nice to see it being protected in other parts of the world.
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Monday, June 22, 2009
Any sober examination of figures like these suggests that the system has promised more than it can realistically deliver. We are borrowing not to finance investment in the future but to pay for today's welfare -- present consumption. Sooner or later, the huge debt will weaken the economy. Nor would paying for all promised benefits with higher taxes be desirable. Big increases in either debt or taxes risk depressing economic growth, making it harder yet to pay promised benefits.President Obama is not responsible for the growth of the welfare state before his administration. But he is certainly responsible for it now. And he doesn't seem to think its a problem.
Sunday, June 21, 2009
Friday, June 19, 2009
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
It's hard to know whether President Obama's health care "reform" is naive, hypocritical or simply dishonest. Probably all three. The president keeps saying it's imperative to control runaway health spending. He's right. The trouble is that what's being promoted as health care "reform" almost certainly won't suppress spending and, quite probably, will do the opposite.
Curtis Branch tried to persuade an Upper Darby man not to testify against three men who had robbed him in May 2008, court documents indicate.This a lot more civilized than having the guy killed, though apparently less effective.
Branch allegedly told the victim he would be paid $5,000 not to show up in court, documents indicate. The victim did testify and five people are now awaiting trial in connection with the robbery and home invasion.
Police believe the shooting is a result of an ongoing dispute between groups from the Crosby Square Apartments and the William Penn Housing Development.Groups? Sounds like gangs to me.
Monday, June 15, 2009
Sunday, June 14, 2009
"What we are not doing — what I have no interest in doing — is running GM," says the president who, when not firing GM's CEO, purging its board of directors and picking new members, is designing new products (imposing fuel economy requirements that will control size, weight, passenger capacity and safety). The president, overcoming his professed reluctance to run GM, resembles the journalist Don Marquis when, after a month on the wagon, he ordered a double martini and exclaimed: "I've conquered my ***dam willpower."Read it all.
"Knocked up?" Forget for a moment that the joke was beneath the level of a host who is considered the king of late-night comedy. But "knocked up" is a crass term that reflects a negative attitude about pregnant women.Is "knocked up" really that offensive a term? After all, a movie by the same name turned out to be pretty popular and well-received, though it did contain a lot of very crass jokes.
And the Palin family seized the opportunity to exploit Letterman's "despicable" joke by claiming the funnyman was talking about Willow.
Letterman, of course, left himself wide open. Because while some people might think Bristol Palin deserves to be the butt of bad jokes, she might just be the most popular teenage mom since Jamie Lee Spears.Some people being, well Mary Mitchell, I guess.
By dragging Willow into the dust-up, the Palins are again able to divert attention away from the real issues involving their oldest daughter.Again, it was Letterman who dragged Willow into the dust-up, not the Palins. She was AT THE GAME. Bristol wasn't.
Bristol is an 18-year-old unmarried mother who is going through baby-daddy drama. As such, her life mocks the family values conservatives such as her mother preach.What we have here is Mary Mitchell trying to mock and mischaracterize conservatives and their so-called family values.
Saturday, June 13, 2009
Friday, June 12, 2009
Washington- Rep. Joe Sestak (D-PA) marched with Speaker Nancy Pelosi's extreme beat once again today and voted with the far-left against a critical national security policy supported by President Obama (HouseHard to say if this will help or hurt Joe in a Democratic primary but it would surely help with the some primary voters.
Roll Call 329). The amendment would give the President power to block
Freedom of Information Act releases of detainee photos for reasons of
national security. This amendment, supported by the White House and
passed with broad bi-partisan support in the Senate, was primarily
opposed by the most liberal members of the Democrat Party.
"Once again Joe Sestak has chosen to be a puppet of the most liberal
wing of the Democrat Party instead of voting to protect the lives of
American men and women in uniform," said NRCC Communications Director
Ken Spain. "By voting against blocking the release of these detainee
photographs, Joe Sestak is acting against the wishes of our military
commanders in a shallow effort to ingratiate himself to Speaker Pelosi."
In a declaration to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals General Petraeus
warned that releasing the photos would endanger the lives of US
Servicemen and Servicewomen:
"The release of images depicting U.S. servicemen mistreating detainees
in Iraq and Afghanistan, or that could be construed as depicting
mistreatment, would likely deal a particularly hard blow to USCENTCOM
and U.S. interagency counterinsurgency efforts in these three key
nations, as well as further endanger the lives of U.S. Soldiers,
Marines, Airmen, Sailors, civilians and contractors presently serving
Obama undoubtedly thinks he is demonstrating historical magnanimity with all these moral equivalencies and self-flagellating apologetics. On the contrary. He's showing cheap condescension, an unseemly hunger for applause and a willingness to distort history for political effect.
Distorting history is not truth-telling, but the telling of soft lies. Creating false equivalencies is not moral leadership, but moral abdication. And hovering above it all, above country and history, is a sign not of transcendence but of a disturbing ambivalence toward one's own country.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Independents are nonideological problem-solvers, but they do not have a split-the-difference approach to politics. They are fiscally conservative but socially progressive, with a strong libertarian streak. It's on fiscal issues that independents are putting the Obama administration on notice.The liberal wing of the Democrat party simply can't attact these people.
Bailout backlash is reflected in independents' attitude about the expanding social safety net. Just 43% believe that we "should help more needy people, even if it means going deeper into debt" -- down 14 points over two years. Independents' belief that "labor unions are necessary to protect the working person" has declined 23% since 2003. They are closer to the Republican view that government is usually wasteful and inefficient.
People who say U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter, D-Pa., changed political parties solely from political self-interest are wrong. He changed from Republican to Democrat for the same reasons so many of his constituents did. His critics are aware of these reasons, but they pretend not to understand.
I have admired Arlen Specter for many years. Although I am a Democrat, and he was a Republican, we are alike. We are neither liberals nor conservatives. We are moderates. Moderates are free to vote their conscience. They understand that some problems need a conservative solution while others need a more liberal one. They have not sold their souls to any political ideology.Nevermind that "liberals" and "conservatives" in office are free to "vote their consciences" whenever they desire. Arlen hasn't sold his soul to a political ideology. He sold his soul for political viablity and survival. He's done it before, when he changed from Democrat to Republican to run for higher office decades ago. Who knows, he could do it again.
If it keeps on turning right at this rate, it will end up more conservative than the Taliban!Really. Does Ms. Byrd really think the GOP is interested in executing homosexuals and girls who seek an education? Weren't Republicans fairly vocal about and supportive of toppling the Taliban in Afghanistan? Republicans didn't lose in the last election because they were becoming "more like the Taliban." They lost because they drifted away from the principles voters elected them to uphold. They lost because they became as lazy and corrupt as the Democrats they replaced in power. They lost because the economy went south. Not because people feared they were about to impose Shariah law.
Because Specter voted his conscience instead of the Republican Party line, the party retaliated by withdrawing its support.Wrong again. The "party" didn't withdraw its support, GOP voters did. The party establishment was perfectly willing to support Specter but the rank and file balked. Big difference.
It was clear that his political philosophy was now more Democratic than Republican. He made the correct choice at the correct time.What political philosophy? Arlen made a gimlet-eyed political calculation. He was wooed by the Democratic establishment to change parties and he did so for his own political survival. If that's a philosophy, racoons have a philosophy too.
In a move that could help increase home ownership rates among minorities and low-income consumers, the Fannie Mae Corporation is easing the credit requirements on loans that it will purchase from banks and other lenders...There was no bigger supporter or cheerleader for this program than Rep. Barney Frank. But he acts like it was all the Republicans fault. The man's a hypocrite through and through and irresponsible one at that.
Fannie Mae, the nation's biggest underwriter of home mortgages, has been under increasing pressure from the Clinton Administration to expand mortgage loans among low and moderate income people and felt pressure from stock holders to maintain its phenomenal growth in profits...
In moving, even tentatively, into this new area of lending, Fannie Mae is taking on significantly more risk, which may not pose any difficulties during flush economic times. But the government-subsidized corporation may run into trouble in an economic downturn, prompting a government rescue similar to that of the savings and loan industry in the 1980's."
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
The argument for unregulated abortion rests on the idea that where there are exceptions, there cannot be a rule. Because rape and incest can lead to pregnancy, because abortion can save women’s lives, because babies can be born into suffering and certain death, there should be no restrictions on abortion whatsoever.
As a matter of moral philosophy, this makes a certain sense. Either a fetus has a claim to life or it doesn’t. The circumstances of its conception and the state of its health shouldn’t enter into the equation.
But the law is a not a philosophy seminar. It’s the place where morality meets custom, and compromise, and common sense. And it can take account of tragic situations without universalizing their lessons.
Monday, June 8, 2009
What’s the policy lesson from these three success stories?Yikes. Just what America's poor need, a new army of social workers. They'll help just by "talking" to them.
It’s that the most decisive weapons in the war on poverty aren’t transfer payments but education, education, education. For at-risk households, that starts with social workers making visits to encourage such basic practices as talking to children. One study found that a child of professionals (disproportionately white) has heard about 30 million words spoken by age 3; a black child raised on welfare has heard only 10 million words, leaving that child at a disadvantage in school.
The next step is intensive early childhood programs, followed by improved elementary and high schools, and programs to defray college costs.
To understand how this is all connected, you have to think like a bond trader. Inflation is their enemy because it means the purchasing power of the dollars they receive when bonds eventually are paid off will be diminished. The only question is by how much.Isn't inflation the enemy of every American, especially those on fixed incomes?
The Sotomayor nomination commits the cardinal sin of identity politics: It seeks to elevate people more for the political currency of their gender and ethnicity than for their individual merit. (Here, too, is the ugly faithlessness in minority merit that always underlies such maneuverings.) Mr. Obama is promising one thing and practicing another, using his interracial background to suggest an America delivered from racial corruption even as he practices a crude form of racial patronage. From America's first black president, and a man promising the "new," we get a Supreme Court nomination that is both unoriginal and hackneyed.Steele's critique would be more powerful if he observed Republicans have fallen into the same practice. G.H.W. Bush nominated Clarence Thomas cynically claiming he was the best the candidate for the job, when it was the color of his skin that elevated him on the list of potentials. At least Thomas never claimed that a wise black man would make better decisions on the bench than a wise white woman. He has proven to be a solid and very competent justice even if Barack Obama refuses to notice.
Sunday, June 7, 2009
Saturday, June 6, 2009
Some put the question in terms of a woman's right to control her own body. That would be valid enough in the realm of smoking, diet, liposuction or sex -- but abortion? Abortion means controlling someone else's body. Incidentally, I realize that as a man I have no authority to speak on the matter, but I'm not speaking as a man. I wouldn't dare. I'm speaking strictly as an ex-fetus.
And in my capacity as an ex-fetus, I say controlling someone else's body is where abortionists and their assassins meet. Please note that I say "meet." I don't say justify. Nothing justifies the assassin. Does anything justify the abortionist? Gee, Mom, I don't know. You tell me.
Friday, June 5, 2009
Thursday, June 4, 2009
A neighbor who said he witnessed the assault outside a corner grocery store said the community had to take action. Louis Valentine, 47, said he had helped hand out pictures of Carrasquillo in the day before the crowd spotted him on the street Tuesday.
“I’m proud of the community for the first time,” said Valentine, who moved to the neighborhood from New York two years ago. “You don’t do that to a little angel.”
“It comes from the military, a meritocracy and any idea of kings or king makers is anathema to that culture,” said Sestak. “I have the greatest respect for President Obama, and the entire Washington political establishment — in fact, I’m running fully in support of President Obama’s agenda.”Sestak brings up his military background just about every time he's asked a question about anything.
“I love my current job and it is where I thought I would be just a few months ago, (but) I believe that many people feel like I do, that we want a say in who our nominee will be,” said Sestak.
“Everybody ought to run if he or she wants to run,” Specter told “Fox News Sunday” when asked about Sestak’s likely candidacy. “And I’m ready to take on all comers.”
“Politically Uncorrected” column authors Dr. G. Terry Madonna, professor of public affairs at Franklin & Marshall College, and Dr. Michael Young, managing partner of Michael Young Strategic Research, agreed with Rendell’s assessment.Joe is no recruit. He is a volunteer. Actually, he is worse. He's flying without orders from the high command. Ed Rendell has been sent out to shoot him down.
According to the pair’s most recent column, Sestak might end up “less the prospective giant killer and more the kamikaze mission recruit.”
“He’d get killed,” said Rendell. “Joe should run for Congress again, establish some seniority. … His time will come, but it’s not this year.”Translation: "His time will come, when WE say it will come."
Gerald and Helen Goode, their children and dog Che (when supervised, he is a vegan; when unsupervised, squirrels disappear) live in a college town, where T-shirts and other media instruct ("Meat is murder"), admonish ("Don't kill wood") and exhort ("Support our troops ... and their opponents"). The college, where Gerald works, gives students tenure. And when Gerald says his department needs money to raise the percentage of minority employees, his boss cheerily replies, "Or we could just fire three white guys. Everybody wins!" Helen shops at the One Earth store, where community shaming enforces social responsibility: "Attention One Earth shoppers, the driver of the SUV is in aisle four. He's wearing the baseball cap."
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Unfortunately, Mr. Obama, that freethinker, took to the CAFE fraud like a bat to a belfry. He signaled his arrival on the presidential stage by sternly demanding higher mileage standards early in his campaign. The "change" candidate who might have broken with a generation of political cant about CAFE instead appropriated the fraud for his own careerist purposes.
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
Monday, June 1, 2009