Thursday, June 23, 2005

 

Larry Elder: If Bush is dumb...?

It just keeps getting better. Not only did Kerry make up his 'war stories', his intellectual prowess was also a big lie.

After promising during the campaign and then refusing to do so, Kerry finally signed Form 180, which authorized the military to release all of his records. (One of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, John O'Neill, says the records are incomplete and mysteries still remain.) The recently released records appear to back up Kerry's account of his activities and injuries in Vietnam.

Kerry's military records also include his college grades. (The New Yorker printed Bush's grades in 1999, but Kerry consistently refused to release his.) It turns out that "dummy" and fellow Yalie George W. Bush made better grades than did brainy, intellectual John Kerry. Under Yale's grading system at the time Bush and Kerry attended, grades from 90 to 100 meant an A, 80 to 89 a B, 70 to 79 a C, and 60 to 69 a D. Kerry received five Ds, including four in his freshman year, with a D in political science! Bush, during his time at Yale, got one D, in astronomy. Overall, Kerry finished Yale with a cumulative score of 76. Bush finished with a score of 77. So who's the dummy?

In fact, Bush himself jokes about his mediocre grades. At the 2001 Yale commencement ceremony, the president said, "To those of you who received honors, awards and distinctions, I say, well done. And to the C students -- I say, you, too, can be president of the United States." Can we expect similar self-deprecating humor from Kerry?

For what it's worth, Thomas Stanley, author of "The Millionaire Mind," says that most millionaires come from the ranks of B and C students. Their success comes from the "people skills" to manage, lead and inspire. That sounds like poor George W. He got elected and re-elected governor of Texas. And then elected and re-elected president of the United States.

Not bad . . . for a "dummy."

This is the perfect example of the elite left - they think they are smarter and better than the average person.

 

Congress should give workers back their extra Social Security taxes - WSJ.com

A very interesting idea to reform social security which has a twist on the personal accounts.

Instead of spending this retirement money, the reformers would allow individual workers to divert every surplus Social Security dollar--from now until the extra cash runs out in 2016--into personal retirement accounts.

For the past 20 or so years, the federal government has collected $1.67 trillion more in payroll taxes (and accumulated interest) than it has paid out in retirement benefits to senior citizens. But not a penny of this money has been saved for any worker's retirement

DeMint-Ryan would allow workers to create individual personal retirement accounts and place marketable government bonds worth their portion of the Social Security surplus into these accounts. Think of this as creating 140 million "lock box" accounts, one for every American worker. After three years, workers could trade these Treasury bonds and invest instead in higher-return mutual funds containing a combination of corporate stocks and bonds.

As for the politics, this calls the bluff of Democrats who claim to be the sole protectors of the Social Security trust fund but have done nothing to stop depleting it. Do they want to protect it or not? And by investing only surplus payroll taxes into private accounts, the proposal blunts the (specious but politically potent) attacks from AARP and the left that personal accounts will endanger the program's solvency. The DeMint-Ryan plan enhances solvency by preventing raids on the trust fund, which is a practice that has long infuriated senior citizens.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

 

Softball: On the fast track UA's Hollowell, Lowe selected for U.S. National Team

Candrea knows how to pick em!

University of Arizona softball players Caitlin Lowe and Alicia Hollowell will play this summer at the sport's highest level.

Lowe, who will be a junior outfielder, and Hollowell, a senior pitcher, were two of 18 players selected for the U.S. National Team, which will be led by UA coach Mike Candrea.

Two former Wildcats, both holdovers from the 2004 gold-medal winning Olympic team, are also on the team - pitcher Jennie Finch and infielder Lovie Jung.

Forty-five players competed at the camp, with 16 players selected for the elite team, which also will compete internationally this summer.

Two other former Arizona players also were chosen for that squad - outfielder Nicole Giordano (who was an alternate on last summer's Olympic team) and catcher Mackenzie Vandergeest.

 

Cheer Up, Conservatives!

An interesting piece putting into perspective some recent conservative based criticism that things aren't going our way.

The biggest advantage of all for conservatives is that they have a lock on the American dream. America is famously an idea more than a geographical expression, and that idea seems to be the province of the right. A recent Pew Research Center Survey, "Beyond Red Versus Blue," shows that the Republicans are more optimistic, convinced that the future will be better than the past and that they can determine their own futures. Democrats, on the other hand, have a European belief that "fate," or, in modern parlance, social circumstances, determines people's lot in life. (And judging by some recent series in newspapers on the subject, the party appears to have staunch allies in American newsrooms at least.)

If the American dream means anything, it means finding a plot of land where you can shape your destiny and raise your children. Those pragmatic dreamers look ever more Republican. Mr. Bush walloped Mr. Kerry among people who were married with children. He also carried 25 of the top 26 cities in terms of white fertility. Mr. Kerry carried the bottom 16. San Francisco, the citadel of liberalism, has the lowest proportion of people under 18 in the country (14.5%).

So cheer up conservatives. You have the country's most powerful political party on your side. You have control of the market for political ideas. You have the American dream. And, despite your bout of triste post coitum, you are still outbreeding your rivals. That counts for more than the odd setback in the Senate.

 

Michelle Malkin: Debunking another Gitmo myth

Malkin, addressing the complete misrepresentation by the media and both sides of the isle with respect to gitmo.

Treating foreign terrorists like American shoplifters -- with full access to civilian lawyers, classified intelligence, and all the attendant rights of a normal jury trial -- is a surefire recipe for another 9/11. That is why the Bush administration fought so hard to erect an alternative tribunal system -- long established in wartime -- in the first place.

Every single detainee currently being held at Guantanamo Bay has received a hearing before a military tribunal. Every one. As a result of those hearings, more than three dozen Gitmo detainees have been released. The hearings, called "Combatant Status Review Tribunals," are held before a board of officers, and permit the detainees to contest the facts on which their classification as "enemy combatants" is based.

Gitmo-bashers attack the Bush administration's failure to abide by the Geneva Conventions. But as legal analysts Lee Casey and Darin Bartram told me, "the status hearings are, in fact, fully comparable to the 'Article V' hearings required by the Geneva Conventions, in situations where those treaties apply, and are also fully consistent with the Supreme Court's 2004 decision in the Hamdi v. Rumsfeld case."

 

Walter E. Williams: Do we want this?

In response to those who think that the Canadian socialized health care system is a good idea...

"I wonder just how many Americans would like to import Canada's healthcare system, which prohibits the purchase of private insurance and private healthcare services. In British Columbia, for example, Bill 82 provides that a physician can be fined up to $20,000 for accepting fees for surgery. In my book, it's medical Naziism for government to prohibit a person who wishes to purchase medical services from doing so. But let's not look down our noses at our northern neighbors, for we too are well along the road toward medical Naziism.

Plaintiffs Jacques Chaoulli, a physician, and his patient, George Zeliotis, launched their legal challenge to the government's monopolized healthcare system after having had to wait a year for hip-replacement surgery. In finding for the plaintiffs, Canada's high court said, "The evidence in this case shows that delays in the public healthcare system are widespread, and that, in some serious cases, patients die as a result of waiting lists for public healthcare. The evidence also demonstrates that the prohibition against private health insurance and its consequence of denying people vital healthcare result in physical and psychological suffering that meets a threshold test of seriousness." Writing for the majority, Justice Marie Deschamps said, "Many patients on non-urgent waiting lists are in pain and cannot fully enjoy any real quality of life. The right to life and to personal inviolability is therefore affected by the waiting times."

The Vancouver, British Columbia-based Fraser Institute keeps track of Canadian waiting times for various medical procedures. According to the Fraser Institute's 14th annual edition of "Waiting Your Turn: Hospital Waiting Lists in Canada (2004)," total waiting time between referral from a general practitioner and treatment, averaged across all 12 specialties and 10 provinces surveyed, rose from 17.7 weeks in 2003 to 17.9 weeks in 2004. For example, depending on which Canadian province, an MRI requires a wait between 7 and 33 weeks. "

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