Monday, April 30, 2007

Global Warming Strikes Back

There was a link on Drudge’s site today to a story on Global Warming from the Times UK. The twist to this story is that now Global Warming is striking Mars. According to the Times, “Scientists from Nasa (sic) say that Mars has warmed by about 0.5C since the 1970’s. This is similar to the warming experienced on Earth over approximately the same period.”

The Times does go on to say that the mechanism appears to be different on Mars than on Earth. This would almost go without saying. If similar global climate change was occurring on other planets inside the solar system the Global Warming Consensus Industry would have a lot to explain. The last I checked, we have not colonized Mars, so any climate change on Mars would have nothing to do with man.

Some scientists have theorized other reasons for the Earth’s current climate than man’s activity. There have been no accurate models put forth by the “man-made global warming” side that work for any previous data to predict today’s climate. Any other scientific field would be forced to prove their model works. If the global warming models are accurate, we should be able to input data from the 1900’s, 1920’s, or even 1870’s and predict today’s climate patterns. However that is not the case. There are no models that even predict today’s climate with data from the 1970’s. Perhaps the climate scientists haven’t been looking in the right place for their theories.

The problem with the current discussion on global warming is that it has become more religion than science. We are asked to accept many leaps of faith without the science to back them up. Much like a collection of church elders, the consensus scientists have decided which theories fit their preconceived notions of global warming. The elders of the religion have even set up a system for the rich church goers to buy their forgiveness through carbon credits. While the actual science behind the carbon credits is as questionable as the religion, few of the faithful question its validity.

Until the media, the Democratic Party, and the European Union allow an actual scientific debate on the issue, man-made Global Warming will continue to look more like religion and less and less like science.

Thursday, April 26, 2007


I have been asked to write an article for Poltics wikia. My article is up and entitled "Senate Majority Leader Joe Lieberman". I would ask everyone to go to the site as a favor and check out my article and to see what you think of the site. If anyone has any trouble finding the article or has an issue with the site, let me know. I am trying to decide if I wish to write more for Poltics wikia and I am going to use my readers thoughts to help with the decision.

Thanks ahead of time.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The Two Faces of Harry

On Thursday Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid proclaimed to the world the United States has lost the war in Iraq.

For an elected official to declare to the world that the United States has lost a military conflict it is actively engaged in is irresponsible and shameful. There are no words to describe the aide this gives our enemies and the pain it causes our soldiers. However, one of the people who disputed the “war is lost” statement by the Senate Majority Leader is the Senator from Nevada, Harry Reid.

This weekend, Senator Reid said, “…no one wants us to succeed more in Iraq than Democrats.” I will be the first to admit that I view myself as a conservative, and that I believe the Democrats look at the world through the wrong lens. However, I have trouble reconciling the two statements the Senator made in the span of a few days. Either the Senator has no idea what he thinks about the War in Iraq, he doesn’t care about Iraq and is only looking for political points, or the Senator has succumb to a mental disorder of some sort and needs immediate medical attention. Regardless of the true problem, one thing is certain: Senator Reid must resign his position as Senate Majority Leader, and should resign from the Senate.

I am not simply applying the same rule to the Democratic Senator as the Democrats would apply to any Republican in a similar position. There will be those who say, “You are only saying this because if the roles were reversed, the Democrats would want the Republican Senators head on a platter.” And perhaps my critics are correct about some small, subconscious part of my mind.

However, I say Senator Reid must resign because he has either decided a small political gain is worth more than a US victory in Iraq, or that the Senator needs to seek immediate medical attention. If it is the first reason, the people of Nevada deserve someone better than that representing them and the people of the United States deserve better than this kind of shameful conduct from a leader in the US Senate. If it is the second reason, my thoughts and prayers are with Harry Reid and his family during this difficult time.

Either way, Senator Reid no longer deserves the respect or trust of the people of the United States and must immediately resign.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Book Review: No Retreat, No Surrender

I recently picked up a copy of No Retreat, No Surrender: One American’s Fight by Tom DeLay with Stephen Mansfield. It is a short book and a fairly quick read. When I initially saw it at the book store, I picked it up because it has a Forward by Rush Limbaugh and a Preface by Sean Hannity. I thought to myself, “There is a cover that will really upset some people.”

I was unfamiliar with Rep. DeLay prior to reading the book. I knew a little about him from the media reports. Most of what I new about Congress during the time DeLay served centered on Newt Gingrich. The book is part biography, part explanation of the inner workings of Congress, and part Political Manifesto.

Tom DeLay was born in 1947 in Texas. The DeLay family moved around a lot while he was growing up. Mr. DeLay grew up in Texas and Venezuela. He went to college and met his future wife there. After college, Mr. DeLay worked with a few extermination businesses before running for State Congress.

The lessons he would learn in State Congress helped him be more effective in the US Congress. Mr. DeLay served in the US Congress from 1984 to 2006. When the Republicans took control in 1994, he was elected Whip. He was nicknamed “The Hammer” due to his ability to get people to vote for bills. However, this was usually done in a spirit of cooperation. Rep. DeLlay points out in his book that he had learned from Texas politics the way to get votes was to work with people. Know the other Representatives, and you can learn what their important issues are. Find away to address those issues in your bill, and you can get their vote.

Mr. DeLay spends a decent portion of the book explaining his own political beliefs beginning with his Political Manifesto. I found this the most interesting part of the book. He explains Political Manifesto to mean, “…the body of ideas that I believe are clear and evident, and to which I have committed my life.” I won’t list all of his ideas, but a few were very interesting. He believes that US Senators should be elected by State Legislatures. He believes the Departments of Education and Commerce should be removed. These jobs are better performed at the State level, and he doesn’t believe the US Government has any business making those decisions.

The overall message I took from this book is that Mr. DeLay believes politics should be about people with different ideas coming together to get a job done. He believes very passionately in our country and our government, and wants the best people running the government. He believes our Federal government has gotten too large, and because many Republicans have helped increase the size of government (including President Bush) they have lost the faith of some of their constituents.

I would encourage anyone interested in politics or political ideas to read this book. It is a short read, and very enjoyable. I would encourage every member of the Republican Party to read this book. Some of the lessons it contains might get the Republicans back in power and bring the voters back to their side.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Supreme Court Gets One Right

The Supreme Court ruled this week on a Federal law prohibiting partial birth abortions. The Supreme Court’s role in our government is to decide if a law written by the Congress, and signed into law by the President, violated the U. S. Constitution. It was not asked to decide if this was a bad or a good law, but was it a Constitutional law. In this case, the Supreme Court decided that the law was Constitutional.

The procedure at the heart of the law is either called “partial birth abortion” or a “dilation and extraction procedure” depending on your point of view in the debate on abortion. Most estimates claim this particular procedure, regardless of the name, is performed on anywhere from 2,200 to 5,000 patients a year. This is out of an approximate 1 million abortions performed a year. The procedure involves partially removing the unborn child from the woman’s uterus (hence the “partial birth” descriptor) and then killing the baby. Depending on the account, the child’s skull is either cut or crushed.

Many abortion rights advocates argue that this is a bad decision because it doesn’t allow for cases where the mother’s life is in danger. This is not accurate. The law allows for the procedure if the mother’s life is in danger, but not her “health”. The subtle difference is that abortions are currently performed with the argument that the mother’s mental well being could be at stake. This is a very nebulous issue that is hard to validate. Allowing the procedure if the mother’s actual life is in danger is much more straight forward, easier to validate, and gives very clear guidance to doctors. Many places aren’t reporting that this is still allowed under the federal law.

Regardless of if you agree with this procedure or not, the Supreme Court made the correct decision. This is a question for the voters and their representatives to decide on, and not the Supreme Court. The Court has decided the law is Constitutional, and that should be the only role for the Court in this case. If you disagree with this law, contact your local representative and work to have the law changed.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Virginia Tech

Like most people, I have been following the events at Virginia Tech from Monday. There will be a time to discuss the political ramifications and the policy changes that should or should not be addressed. Now is not that time.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of those who have been touched by these tragic events.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Don Imus Mistreated...

I won’t rehash the entire Don Imus vs Al Sharpton drama from last week. I think most of it was a lot of up roar over almost nothing. I stopped listening to Don Imus many years ago mainly because he hasn’t been funny in a really long time. However, any listener of the Imus show knows that he insults everyone. I honestly don’t believe what he said was that bad. It isn’t as bad as some of the things liberals have called the President, and it isn’t as bad as some of the things Republicans have called Mrs. Clinton. Anyone who thinks “nappy headed ho’s” is bad should read some of the lyrics from a few prominent rappers.

However, let’s say for the sake of argument that what Don Imus said was truly tasteless, despicable, and deplorable in every way those words can be used. I still think the way CBS handled the situation was wrong. This conversation comes up anytime someone says something on the radio that hurts the feelings of someone else with thinner skin. Don Imus is free to say whatever he wants. If you don’t like what he says, don’t listen to his show. I believe the market place will correct this problem. If enough people decide they don’t like what he says, no one will listen to his show, and then he will be unemployed. As it is, CBS was intimidated by Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson. They bowed to pressure from these two self appointed leaders of the black community and fired Don Imus. Imus will probably now follow in the footsteps of Howard Stern and appear on satellite radio.

Emboldened by their success, Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson now are turning their sites on other airwaves. These two would like to look at standards for industries like music or talk radio. Anytime someone like Sharpton or Jackson talk about standards, they mean legislation. I don’t think there should be legislation regarding what can or can’t be said on the radio or television. There is Freedom of Speech. If something is bad enough, people will stop listening, and Capitalism will work its magic.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Back From Vacation

I’m back from vacation. My lovely wife, daughter, and I returned yesterday. We had been in Hawai’i and I think we are still all on Island time.

I will be back to updating the site on a more normal schedule. I appreciate everyone checking in with me while I was gone. I am already working on two posts for the site. I finished Tom Delay’s new book No Retreat, No Surrender on one of the many airplanes. I really enjoyed the book and hope to have a book review up for it in the next couple of days.

In addition to a new book review, I am working on a post about Rev. Al Sharpton. The reverend is calling for an end to free speech, so I thought now is the time to criticize him before it becomes illegal.

Enjoy the weekend, and I hope to have at least one new post by Monday.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

It’s Good to be Ahmadinejad

If your name is Ahmadinejad, you have had a very good couple of weeks. First, Iran captured 15 British Sailors and Soldiers. While many in the West followed the plight of these 15, very few seriously condemned the action, and no one really expressed any resolve to do anything about it. Then on Monday, President Ahmadinejad announced to the world that Iran now has 3,000 centrifuges and can push its nuclear energy program even further. And again, with only minor exception, very few in the media or in positions of power seem to have taken much notice.

I would speculate that Iran was trying to see what the West and the rest of the world would do if they captured a few Western sailors. Iran found that the west would do nothing, and they gained an extra PR advantage in the Middle East with the assorted confessions and PR video released to the world. While the West had a few (and I emphasize few) strong words, there was never any threat that the Western response would go past a few words.

Fresh from that success, President Ahmadinejad gave the world, the UN, and anyone not studying Don Imus the collective finger. The Iranian President revealed to the world that Iran has no intension of suspending its uranium enrichment program. The UN had previously given Iran 60 days to stop its program or face tougher sanctions. Since Iran has ignored the last three similar warnings from the UN, no one should have been surprised when they ignored the UN yet again. However, President Ahmadinejad raised the stakes by claiming to have 3,000 centrifuges now operating. This number caught most experts off guard. While Russia and a few others have expressed disbelief at this number, the implications are very ominous if Iran is telling the truth. With 3,000 centrifuges, Iran could be anywhere from 1 to 3 years away from producing 1 to 2 nuclear weapons a year. Personally, I believe we should take our enemies at their word. If they say they have no intention of complying with the UN, and are in fact increasing their production, we should take them at their word. The West should assume at this point that Iran will not stop until it has a usable nuclear weapon. However, most in the media seem to be more distraught over “racially insensitive” comments by Imus.

The West must focus on the important thing and decide what to do with Iran. There are really only two possible outcomes, the West accepts a nuclear Iran, or the West prevents Iran (and by extension Hezbollah, Hamas, and maybe Syria) from getting a nuclear weapon. No matter what the rhetoric, to date both the West and the UN seem willing to grudgingly accept a nuclear Iran. While we have said this is unacceptable, we really haven’t done anything to prevent it from happening.

The second case is the much more difficult one, but the one we really should be following. It would be a terrible thing for the entire world if Iran was able to get a nuclear weapon. Iran has said it would use a nuke in Israel. Iran is accused of helping our enemies in Iraq. Iran has definitely been a huge backer of Hezbollah. I would argue that Iran has been at war with the US since the Islamic revolution and capture of American hostages in the 1970’s. Because of that, Iran represents a terrible threat to the West, to Israel, and to the US.

It is time for the West to wake up and realize that maybe we should take our enemies at thier word. Hitler promised to eliminate the Jews and no one took him at his word. Are we ready to repeat the same mistake?

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The Real Problem in Iraq?

I am enjoying my time away with my family. However, sometimes, I need my political fix. During one such time, I found this article from The Art of Peace. David discusses a few points I have talked about in previous post. At the end, he says that he hopes I respond to this because a few of my original post are now deep in the archive. As fate would have it, his post is now in his archive as well. I thought that vacation time would be the perfect time to respond to his post.

I have stated a few times on my blog that the Democrats are bordering on treason with some of their rhetoric. I honestly feel that in their desire to defeat a President who can’t be re-elected, they would rather loose the war in Iraq than give any credit to President Bush. I cite the recent votes for Surrender by Democrats in both the House and Senate as evidence of their desire to beat Bush. David makes the argument on his site that if the country would be better off leaving Iraq, maybe it isn’t really treason but something closer to insight.

David points out that we will probably need to be in Iraq for many generations to come if we are going to truly do the job we have laid out that needs to be done. I agree with David. I believe under the right circumstances, we may be able to remove a large portion of our force from Iraq within the next two to three years. However, we will probably need some force in Iraq and the Middle East to help Iraq for the next ten to twenty years.

David says if Americans aren’t ready for that type of occupation, “…it is because George W. Bush continually told people things would be easier and quicker than they could reasonably have been expected to be.” I disagree with David. President Bush has stated time and time again that the War on Terror is going to be long and difficult. In some speeches he has said that this will be a war that the next President will have to fight as well. I believe the reason people want us out of Iraq and may not be prepared for what we have to do in Iraq is only partly the Democrats fault. The real problem is that we as Americans want results now. We aren’t patient, and we believe that any war should be wrapped up in a few months.

This attitude is more dangerous than anything the Democrats have done. We as Americans must either change our attitude or accept the fact that we are no longer a Superpower. A Superpower is only a superpower if it can project its power throughout the world. If we truly are a “Paper Tiger” as bin Laden has said, if we don’t have the attention span to go the distance for a democratic alley, then we have bigger problems as a nation than who our President is our which party is in power.

Friday, April 06, 2007

To Torture or Not To Torture?

This post is based on a comment Familyman made on the last post. When you discuss what means are acceptable or not acceptable when interrogating prisoners, you quickly get into a very complicated discussion. I felt this topic needed more room than a few comments tacked onto another post.

The question I wish to pose to my readers is simply this, “Is torture ever an acceptable means to gather information from a prisoner of war?” Any time torture is discussed a few ground rules have to be in place. Most interrogators I have heard or read interviews from believe that torture typically isn’t very useful. The information gained from torturing an individual is suspect. Many interrogators believe that an individual being tortured will manufacture information simply to make the pain stop.

At the same time, some would question whether or not the alleged practices that have been leaked from Gitmo or Abu Ghraib are considered torture. In order to cut past this, let’s let torture refer to anything that an interrogator might consider above and beyond typical military interrogation techniques. This is intentionally vague. I wish to start this discussion focusing on whether or not torture is ever acceptable, no matter what methods are employed. To that end, I am going to start with the classic “Ticking Time Bomb” Senario:

An individual you have in custody has just placed a nuclear dirty bomb in downtown Manhattan. You know with 100% certainty that the bomb is in place and is set to go off in one hour. You also know with 100% certainty that the individual you have placed the bomb and knows how to stop the bomb from detonating. If you are able to get the information from this individual in a reasonable amount of time, you can stop the bomb. There facts are hard rules of the scenario. The question becomes, do you authorize any form of torture on this prisoner? Why? Why not?

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Public Service Announcement

I believe it is a voter’s duty to keep up with how their representatives in Washington vote. Regardless of your political beliefs, it is up to you to monitor what your Senator or Representative votes on and how they vote. If they vote for something you don’t agree with, let them know. I contact my representatives often to let them know how I feel on issues.

Sometimes it can be pretty difficult to find out exactly how a particular individual voted in Washington. The Senator or Representatives office may not be forth coming with exactly how they voted. It turns out there is a free service everyone can sign up for and get emails on how your elected official votes. The emails tell you how each of your Senators and Representative voted during the previous week, and what bills are coming up. It is only one email a week, and so far it hasn’t added me to any spam list.

Go to and look for the link to “Vote Monitor” on the left hand side. Supply your zip code and email address and you will be signed up. No one has an excuse for not keeping an eye on their politicians.

On a personal note, I am on vacation with my family. I am trying to monitor comments a few times a day, but I will probably post a little less often for the next week or so. I will be back up to the normal posting schedule in about two weeks. Thanks for your understanding. I hope this doesn’t temper anyone’s ideas or comments.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Is Iran's Position Defendable?

Last week Iranian forces captured 15 British sailors operating in Iraqi waters. The British sailors had just finished inspecting an Indian vessel. Iran immediately claimed the British had entered Iranian wateres. Britain released GPS co-ordinates showing their sailors had been in Iraqi waters. The Indian Captain has been contacted and also confirmed the British were in Iraqi waters. The Iraqi government has said the same thing. Even the Iranian government provided GPS co-ordinates inside of Iraqi waters. Once Britain pointed this out, the Iranian government changed the co-ordinates to within its own waters 24 hours after the first co-ordinates had been released.

Tony Blair has called on the world community to demand the Iranian government return the UK sailors and their equipment. Mr. Blair points out the sailors were enforcing a UN embargo. He has rightly attacked and criticized the Iranian government as it continues to violate Geneva conventions. It is against the Geneva conventions to film and broadcast captured soldiers for publicity. The “confessions” and letters Iran has released are an outrage.

Today I am traveling on vacation with my family and I picked up a copy of the Wall Street Journal. Being the news junkie I am, I needed my fix, and it is hard to get updates from CNN and Fox News while flying from airport to airport. However, I was outraged when I opened the paper to find an article entitled, “History Frames Iran Standoff” with the subtitle Resentment Runs Deep Over Past British Hand in Oil Trade, Governing. While the article doesn’t come out and blame Britain for the capture of her sailors, it does hint that maybe the British Government, and by proxy, the United States share at least some responsibility in the abduction of these sailors.

This is a very slippery slope. This is the same mentality that gives rise to the belief that the United States deserved 9/11. The theory says that somehow the attacks on the Trade Center and the Pentagon were actually the fault of Americans because of our history in the Middle East. The attacks of 9/11 were the fault of 19 Muslims and their supporters. The capturing of these British sailors, and what happens to them, is the responsibility of the Iranian government.

This is the same government that continues to pursue a nuclear program when the world and the UN have told it not to. I have written before that Iran shows no real desire to be part of the world community. While an invasion in Iran might not be the answer, immediate sanctions and isolation are the short term answers for both of these problems. Iran must be taught that there is a way nations act when they wish to be part of the world community, and this isn’t it.