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Thursday, April 26, 2007

Tax Revenues

Last September I posted some comments on a report of a record one-day tax revenue. On Friday, September 15, 2006, according to the U.S. Treasury, tax receipts totaled $85.8 billion, up from the previous record of $71 billion set on the same date the previous year.

Sept. 15, is a quarterly deadline for tax payments, and included in that $85.8 billion was another record: $71.8 billion in corporate tax receipts, up from $63 billion in the previous year.

Why am I again mentioning this now? Because today there is a report of yet another one-day tax revenue record. On April 24, tax revenue from individuals recorded an all time high of $48.7 billion, up from the previous record of $36.4 billion set on April 25, 2006.

All of these records have occurred during the Bush tax cut era.

So what does all of this tell us? It tells us that tax cuts actually increase revenue, not decrease it. Tax cuts fuel the economy. When the economy is strong, everyone makes more money. When everyone makes more money, more money goes to the government, not less.

The Bush tax cuts that have resulted in these record revenues are the same tax cuts that the new Democrat-controlled Congress is refusing to make permanent. They want to roll back some of these cuts. Doing so will slow the economy. Corporations will give the government a higher percentage of their profits, but because they will make less money, the government, over time, will collect a lower actual dollar amount. Furthermore, because corporations will make less money, individuals will begin to make less money, and the government will begin to collect less from us as well. Not a lower percent percentage of our income, but a lower actual dollar amount because we'll have less in our pockets to begin with.

Government revenues will be down, and individuals will have less money in their pockets. But hey, we’ll all feel good because we “stuck it to the rich” by rolling back their tax cuts.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

The Obama Myth

Barack Obama attempts to portray himself as a moderate. He's very well-spoken, highly intelligent, and persuasive. Using these gifts, he has done a great job building an image of himself as a man who will stand up for the values of mainstream America.

That image is a facade. Anyone who has taken the time to really look at where Obama stands on issues knows this, and his response to this week's Supreme Court ruling upholding the "Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act" once again shows Obama's true colors.

Partial-birth abortion is a procedure that involves pulling a baby's legs out of the birth canal using ultrasound and forceps, delivering the baby's entire body except the head, puncturing the back of the baby's skull, inserting a suction catheter into the puncture, suctioning out the baby's brain causing the skull to collapse, then removing the collapsed skull from the birth canal.

In 2003, President Bush signed into federal law a ban on this procedure, and this week the Supreme Court upheld the ban.

Senator Obama almost immediately released this statement on the Court's decision to uphold this ban.

I strongly disagree with today’s Supreme Court ruling, which dramatically departs from previous precedents safeguarding the health of pregnant women. As Justice Ginsburg emphasized in her dissenting opinion, this ruling signals an alarming willingness on the part of the conservative majority to disregard its prior rulings respecting a woman’s medical concerns and the very personal decisions between a doctor and patient. I am extremely concerned that this ruling will embolden state legislatures to enact further measures to restrict a woman's right to choose, and that the conservative Supreme Court justices will look for other opportunities to erode Roe v. Wade, which is established federal law and a matter of equal rights for women.

Illustrating the false impression that the general public has of Obama as a moderate, the first reader comment on the senator's response began with these words: "I thought that Mr. Obama was a bit more of a centrist..."

That's what's truly alarming, that Mr. Obama can paint himself as a centrist and that people fall for it simply because he looks and sounds good. And just so that no one gets the impression that this position is out of the norm for Obama, consider the following. As a state senator in Illinois, Obama opposed legislation to protect babies who were actually born alive!

Jill Stanek, a registered nurse who has fought to end "live-birth abortion," had this to say:

As a nurse at an Illinois hospital in 1999, I discovered babies were being aborted alive and shelved to die in soiled utility rooms. I discovered infanticide.

Legislation was presented on the federal level and in various states called the Born Alive Infants Protection Act. It stated all live-born babies were guaranteed the same constitutional right to equal protection, whether or not they were wanted.

BAIPA sailed through the U.S. Senate by unanimous vote. Even Sens. Clinton, Kennedy and Kerry agreed a mother's right to "choose" stopped at her baby's delivery.

The bill also passed overwhelmingly in the House. NARAL went neutral on it. Abortion enthusiasts publicly agreed that fighting BAIPA would appear extreme. President Bush signed BAIPA into law in 2002.

But in Illinois, the state version of BAIPA repeatedly failed, thanks in large part to then-state Sen. Barack Obama. It only passed in 2005, after Obama left...

Obama articulately worried that legislation protecting live aborted babies might infringe on women's rights or abortionists' rights. Obama's clinical discourse, his lack of mercy, shocked me...

Please don't be deceived by the Barack Obama myth. He's anything but moderate; he's anything but mainstream. He's far to the left of most Americans, including most democrats. Please make sure that you know who Barack Obama really is before you make a decision to support him.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Uncovering Deceitful Reporting on Stem-Cell Research Breakthrough

The headline from the UK Times Online simply reads Diabetics cured by stem-cell treatment. Most who read that headline are probably thinking embryonic stem-cells because that's the kind the media talks about 99% of the time. Those who know that there are other kinds of stem-cells besides the embryonic kind are wondering whether the stem-cells used in this treatment are the embryonic kind or the adult kind.

The first line in David Rose's article reads "Diabetics using stem-cell therapy have been able to stop taking insulin injections for the first time, after their bodies started to produce the hormone naturally again." Still, no mention of whether these are embryonic or adult stem-cells.

When we keep reading, we find that the stem-cells used in this treatment were drawn from the patient's own blood. The article never actually uses the term "adult stem-cells," but that's what they are.

It's not surprising that this breakthrough has come from adult stem-cells. Adult stem-cells have shown great promise in the treatment of many diseases. The only consistent results from embryonic stem-cell research have been dead embryos and cancerous tumors in laboratory animals. Again, none of this is mentioned in the article.

In fact, what the article implies is that this breakthrough in the treatment of diabetes is the result of embryonic stem-cell research. In what is supposedly a news article on this particular study, Rose states, "The findings were released to reporters yesterday as the future of US stem-cell research was being debated in Washington."

The fact is that no one is debating adult stem-cell research; the only stem-cell research being debated in Washington is embryonic stem-cell research, and that has nothing to do with this study.

Rose goes on to talk about the promise that stem-cell research has shown in the treatment of various other diseases, then suggests that the debate over stem-cell research is preventing major breakthroughs in these areas.

Previous studies have suggested that stem-cell therapies offer huge potential to treat a variety of diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and motor neuron disease. A study by British scientists in November also reported that stem-cell injections could repair organ damage in heart attack victims.

But research using the most versatile kind of stem cells — those acquired from human embryos — is currently opposed by powerful critics, including President Bush.

The implication here is obvious: President Bush and other conservatives oppose using stem-cells to cure awful diseases.

The deceit here is contemptible: we are led to believe that the research "currently opposed by powerful critics, including President Bush" is the kind of research that is showing the most promise.

The fact is that only adult stem-cell research has shown any real promise in treating any of these diseases. As a case in point, the same study that Rose mentions, in which British scientists "reported that stem-cell injections could repair organ damage in heart attack victims," is a study that uses stem-cells extracted from the patient's own bone marrow - adult stem-cells. Once again, no one is opposing adult stem-cell research.

It's great that research using stem-cells is showing promise in curing terrible diseases. The research needs to continue. However, we need to make clear exactly what kind of stem-cell research we're talking about.

We're talking about the kind that has not produced cancerous tumors, the kind that does not destroy human embryos, and the kind that has actually been used to treat real-life patients in clinical trials. We're talking about adult stem-cell research.

Monday, April 09, 2007


It's Monday, April 9, 2007. I looked out my window this afternoon, and guess what: it was snowing - again!

I wish we could get a little warming on this part of the globe.

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