Monday, February 28, 2011

Obama's Latest Derelection of Presidential Responsibilities Regarding DOMA

I was horrified and angry beyond belief when I heard President Obama proclaim that his administration and justice department would no longer defend existing law in the case of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).  I was seething and ready to do a post on this topic this morning, when Free0352 beat me to the punch.  His article is excellent and encapsulated exactly my thoughts on that topic.  With that being the case, following is his guest post in full: 

Washington: Today, President Sarah Palin, declaring that the 1973 Roe Vs Wade Court Decision was "constitutionally indefensible" declared she will no longer authorize the Attorney General's office to oppose court challenges to the law that protects a women's right to an abortion. The Attorney General said today - “I will instruct department attorneys to advise courts in other pending litigation in defense of abortion, of the president’s and my conclusions that the law’s determination that a women has a right to an abortion is indefensible and to not pursue those cases."Imagine folks if that were the headline in major newspapers across the United States today? The liberals of this country would demand the impeachment of the President. Were that to happen, I would agree with them.

However, when something exactly like this happened today, there was barely a peep from the left -

The Obama administration said it will no longer oppose court challenges to the Defense of Marriage Act, which prohibits the federal government from recognizing same-sex marriages for purposes of taxes, social security and other programs.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder wrote yesterday to House Speaker John A. Boehner, an Ohio Republican, to announce the executive branch’s new position on the 15-year-old law.

When I saw that today, I had to reread it several times. I just couldn't believe it.

President Obama, you are not a one man Supreme Court, you swore an oath to uphold the laws of this country. You are now derelict in that duty. As to my abortion analogy, you dear readers (and perhaps even you Democrats) can quickly see how this frightening precedent can be used and where it can go. There is no telling the ways an out of control Presidency can damage our country. I don't like Roe Vs Wade any more than liberals likely support DOMA... but it's the law of the land. Presidents have to support that, as we are a nation of laws. This is our President taking the law into his own hands. That cannot be tolerated. I hope our new House leadership votes to impeach this President should he continue this course, and immediately resolve to defund entirely both the office of the President of the United States and the Attorney General's office until he complies with his Oath of Office. This cannot be tolerated.

I don't say that lightly, until now I've never thought Obama should be impeached. This is different, this is totally illegal, and wrong.

You can read Free0352 daily at John Galt For President.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Bearing Our Own Cross

We complain about the cross we bear but don't realize it is preparing us for the dip in the road that God can see and we cannot.

H/T: Rex

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Obama's Report Card After Two Years in Office

I came across an interesting article written by K. E. Campbell in the American Thinker a few weeks back that quantified what most of us Americans already instinctively know.  President Obama has been in office for two years now, and until last month had a Democratic congress supporting him and indeed doing the heavy lifting for him.  The real question is, after what President Obama and the Democrats have brought us thus far, are you better off now than you were $4 Trillion ago... er, I mean two years ago?

  Jan-09   Current  % chg Source
Avg. retail price/gallon gas in U.S.                 (regular conventional) $1.83  $3.10  69.60%     1
                                                                Selected commodities:
     Crude oil, European Brent (barrel) $43.48  $99.02  127.70%     2
     Crude oil, West TX Inter. (barrel) $38.74  $91.38  135.90%     2
     Natural gas, Henry Hub, $ per MMbtu  $4.85  $4.48  -7.60%     2
     Gold: London  (per troy oz.) $853.25  $1,369.50  60.50%     2
     Corn, No.2 yellow, Central IL $3.56  $6.33  78.10%     2
     Soybeans, No. 1 yellow, IL $9.66  $13.75  42.30%     2
     Sugar, cane, raw, world, lb. fob $13.37  $35.39  164.70%     2
Consumer Price Index                                 (for all urban consumers) 211.1 219.2 3.80%     3
Producer Price Index: finished goods 170.3 183 7.50%     3
Producer Price Index: all commodities 171 189.9 11.10%     3
Unemployment rate, non-farm, overall 7.60% 9.40% 23.70%     3
Unemployment rate, blacks 12.60% 15.80% 25.40%     3
Number of unemployed 11,616,000 14,485,000 24.70%     3
Number of fed. employees, ex. uniformed military (curr = 12/10 prelim) 2,779,000 2,840,000 2.20%     3
Real median household income                 (2008 vs 2009) $50,112  $49,777  -0.70%     4
Number of food stamp recipients             (curr = 10/10) 31,983,716 43,200,878 35.10%     5
Number of unemployment benefit recipients   (curr = 12/10) 7,526,598 9,193,838 22.20%     6
Number of long-term unemployed,              in millions 2.6 6.4 146.20%     3
Poverty rate, individuals (2008 vs 2009) 13.20% 14.30% 8.30%     4
People in poverty in U.S.,                              in millions (2008 vs 2009) 39.8 43.6 9.50%     4
House price index (current = Q3 2010) 198.7 192.7 -3.00%     7
S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index:            20 city composite (curr = 10/10) 146.4 145.3 -0.80%     8
Number of properties subject of                  foreclosure filings, in millions 2.82 2.87 1.70%     9
DJIA (12,403 on 6/3/08,                             date BHO clinched Dem. nomination) 7,949 11,825 48.80%     2
NASDAQ (2,480 on 6/3/08) 1,441 2,725 89.10%     2
S&P 500 (1,378 on 6/3/08) 805 1,282 59.20%     2
Global Dow 1,356 2,153 58.80%     2
U.S. rank in Economic Freedom World Rankings      5       9   n/a    10
Consumer Confidence Index  (curr = 12/10) 37.7 52.5 39.30%     11
Present Situation Index (curr = 12/10) 29.9 23.5 -21.40%    11
Failed banks (curr = 2010 + 2011 to date) 140 164 17.10%    12
U.S. dollar versus Japanese yen exchange rate 89.76 82.03 -8.60%     2
U.S. money supply, M1,                                in billions (curr = 12/10 preliminary) 1,575.10 1,865.70 18.40%    13
U.S. money supply, M2, in billions               (curr = 12/10 preliminary) 8,310.90 8,852.30 6.50%    13
National debt, in trillions $10.63  $14.05  32.20%    14

1 - U.S. Energy Information Admin.
2 - Wall Street Journal
3 - Bureau of Labor Statistics
4 - Census Bureau
5 - USDA
6 - U.S. Dept. of Labor
7 - FHFA
8 - Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller
9 - RealtyTrac
10 - Heritage Foundation and WSJ
11 - The Conference Board
12 - FDIC
13 - Federal Reserve
14 - U.S. Treasury

The Cowboy Rules of the West

The cowboy rules for Arizona, Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, New Mexico, Wyoming, Montana, Utah, Idaho and the rest of the west where rugged individuals still live are as follows:

1. Pull your pants up. You look like an idiot.

2. Turn your cap right, your head ain't crooked.

3. Let's get this straight: it's called a 'gravel road.' I drive a pickup truck because I want to. No matter how slow you drive, you're gonna get dust on your Lexus. Drive it or get out of the way.

4. They are cattle. That's why they smell like cattle. They smell like money to us. Get over it. Don't like it? I-10 & I-40 go east and west, I-17 & I-15 goes north and south. Pick one and go.

5. So you have a $60,000 car. We're impressed. We have $250,000 combines that are driven only 3 weeks a year.

6. Every person in the Wild West waves. It's called being friendly. Try to understand the concept.

7. If that cell phone rings while a bunch of geese/pheasants/ducks/doves are comin' in during a hunt, we WILL shoot it outta your hand. You better hope you don't have it up to your ear at the time.

8. Yeah. We eat trout, salmon, deer and elk. You really want sushi and caviar? It's available at the corner bait shop.

9. The 'Opener' refers to the first day of deer season. It's a religious holiday held the closest Saturday to the first of November.

10. We open doors for women. That's applied to all women, regardless of age.

11. No, there's no 'vegetarian special' on the menu. Order steak, or you can order the Chef's Salad and pick off the 2 pounds of ham and turkey.

12. When we fill out a table, there are three main dishes: meats, vegetables, and breads. We use three spices: salt, pepper, and ketchup! Oh, yeah ... We don't care what you folks in Boston call that stuff you eat... IT AIN'T REAL CHILI!!

13. You bring 'Coke' into my house, it better be brown, wet and served over ice. You bring 'Mary Jane' into my house, she better be cute, know how to shoot, drive a truck, and have long hair.

14. College and High School Football is as important here as the Giants, the Yankees, the Mets, the Lakers and the Knicks, and a dang sight more fun to watch.

15. Yeah, we have golf courses. But don't hit the water hazards - it spooks the fish.

16. Turn down that blasted car stereo! That thumpity-thump ain't music, anyway. We don't want to hear it anymore than we want to see your boxers! (Refer back to #1!)

17. We don't care how you "did things back in California".  If you like the way things were done back there, then move back. 

18. We stand when the national anthem is played, face old glory, remove our hats, and cover our hearts as a sign of respect for this greatest nation on earth.  If that offends you, we suggest you move to another country.  Perhaps California or New York, as they also don't seem to like this country.

19.  We call our elders "ma'am" or "sir" also out of respect.  You got that, dude and dudettes?

20. We honor and support our police, fireman, and particularly our military.  Anyone that puts their butt on the line to protect or save you is worthy of that honor.

21.  Them there crosses you occasionally see on the side of the road, those are memorials set up out of respect for our friends and neighbors that might have wrecked and died there.  If this cross offends you, too bad.  And good luck taking your complaint to the ACLU... they ain't welcome in our states either.

If you can live by these rules, welcome and howdy!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Duality of God and Science in Creation

Let me begin by saying as to the premise of this posting, even as a theist, I cannot say with absolute certainty that God exists any more than any atheist can prove with certainty that He doesn't. At least I know that I was unable to do so. That said, I find that science and faith are not necessarily a dichotomy but rather are a duality.  In other words science and faith in a God-creator are absolutely compatible and indeed hard to fathom as separate in the creation of the universe and life as we have come to know it.

As a somewhat precocious teenager, after witnessing the horrible death of my father to cancer, I set out to try and muddle through much research in the attempt to prove to myself that God was the very myth many folks proposed Him to be.  The funny thing is that over the course of the next decade, the more I read and researched the more I found minds far more brilliant than mine will ever be that made very compelling cases for the existence of God.

How is it that all of the known (and unknown) creation of our universe came into being?  What was the genesis of it all, if you atheists will pardon the term?  How can such an incomprehensibly complex universe that supports life as we know it come into being simply by untold quadrillions of fortunate results of random chance?

In my past research I came across a certain Nobel Laureate and high energy physicist by the name of Professor Steven Weinberg, an admitted skeptic, who wrote, "Life as we know it would be impossible if any one of several physical quantities had slightly different values... One constant does seem to require fine tuning."  This constant to which he was referring has to do with the energy of the big bang.  Weinberg quantifies the tuning to one part in 10 to the 120th power.  In other words if the energy of the big bang were different by one part out of 1000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 there would be no life anywhere in our universe.  That is an amazingly tuned degree of energy that was the catalyst for this universe.  Uncannily so, I'd say. 

Further, there are many other factors at play in the formation and existence of our universe that have such a remarkable degree of precision that if changed even minutely would necessarily negate the chance for life in the universe as we now know it.  Just a few of these items include the following:

1.) The strength of the electromagnetic force (which encourages atoms to form molecules)
2.) The strength of the nuclear force which holds atomic nuclei together.  (If it were even a minute bit stronger, the di-proton and not hydrogen would be the major component of the universe, hence no burning stars.)
3.) Gravity
4.) The very mass and energy of the big bang
5.) The temperature of the big bang
6.) The rate of expansion of the universe

If, during the formation of the universe, myriads of factors were left to pure random chance, as many atheists claim was the case,  then we evidently have "won the lottery” trillions and quadrillions of times by defying mind boggling odds on any one of these few properties. 

Further, let’s look at the stupendous appeals to chance in the building of life from the other perspective regarding carbon based life forms.  The likelihood for amino acids to form by chance, which are the building blocks of proteins, and thus the building blocks of our life is astronomical.  This process being replicated repeatedly by random chance in order to form intelligent life is so miniscule as to approach impossibility.

Life as we know it is based on the element carbon.  It is the sixth element in the periodic table and the only element that is capable of forming the long and complex chains necessary for life.  Now the very formation of carbon is quite remarkable in its unlikelihood.  To form carbon, a radioactive beryllium (number four on the periodic table) must absorb the nucleus of helium (number two) and thus form the number six element of carbon.  (4+2=6 ….simple!)  The issue is that beryllium is very short lived.  Indeed the mean life of radioactive beryllium atom is 10 to the minus 16th seconds.  In other words, its mean life span is 0.0000000000000001 seconds.  In that exceptionally brief period of time, the helium nucleus must find, collide with, and be absorbed by the beryllium nucleus to create carbon… the building block of life.  The ONLY way that the helium nucleus can be absorbed by the beryllium atom in that sliver of time before the beryllium atom decays is if the energies of these two nuclei are exactly matched to the necessary levels of excitation.  And they are indeed matched precisely.  If this reaction were prevented by a mismatch in energies, then the universe would not contain hardly anything other than hydrogen and helium, and certainly not any life.  It is uncanny the precision of this, if not done by intended design.

Even something as simple as the earth being 93 million miles away from the sun instead of 92 million or 94 million miles determines whether life on earth comes into being.  Either of the former or the latter would doom our very existence as the temperature on earth would be too hot or too cold to support life. 

Now I know all of these scientific facts don't specifically point to a Christian deity, (and in the interest of keeping this posting shorter than a Tolstoy novel, I will breach that subject in a future posting) but even just these few items I have mentioned are so significant that, to me, it takes more faith to believe that ALL of these things happened by the amazing luck of random chance coming to benevolent fruition a googolplex number of times rather than by the hand of a divine creator.

It has been said by Sir Fred Hoyle, the British Astronomer, that the spontaneous emergence of a single cell organism from random couplings of chemicals is about as likely as the assemblage of a Boeing 747 by a tornado whirling through a junkyard. 

How much more complex is a fern, or a dog, or human than such a single cell organism?

No, I feel far more confident in the science that supports my faith in a creator than the possibility that life exists because it won the lottery a googolplex number of times.  When something becomes so infinitesimally small of a likelihood of happening that it approaches zero, then I would say that logic would dictate that the possibility of God must be the only true answer.