Tom Allison's Blog


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?
Monday, August 30, 2004
Posted by Mrs. Tom Allison

Tom Allison, compiler of points to ponder on liberty and its price, succumbed to pneumonia on August 24, 2004. He kept me vigilante and concerned about my freedoms, and I hope he did the same for you who dropped in at this site.

Sunday, August 15, 2004
Twilight of the press gods
The American Thinker, by Thomas Lifson

Original Article

Posted By:Magnante, 8/14/2004 3:07:57 PM

"The genie is out of the bottle. The best efforts of the mainstream media to blockade the story of Kerry’s lies about Cambodia, and the charges by the vast majority of men who served with him in the Swift Boat operations, have failed. [snip] The current efforts of the press to define Kerry’s lies as a non-event are destroying their own traction."

United Nations Wages War on Capitalism by Cheryl K. Chumley -- Capitalism Magazine

"As if our nation's free-market ideal isn't damaged enough -- witness, if you will, the generally lengthy permitting process for businesses and the prevalence of zoning laws, environmental mandates, eminent domain abuses and hefty tax burdens that plague our would-be entrepreneurs and developers in nearly every county, city and state across America.

Now comes the United Nations, with its Global Compact Center and its Responsible Investment Initiative. Announced in July at the four-month-long "Universal Forum of Cultures in Barcelona 2004," both these programs are thinly veiled attacks against capitalism that, left unchecked, will result in a ceding of private and sovereign national oversight and regulatory powers to the global government.---"

Taxpayer Billions Wasted on Education by Alan Caruba -- Capitalism Magazine

"---One can point to virtually every one of the so-called education programs and find one example after another of failure. The second largest, Head Start, cost nearly $6.8 billion in 2004. Studies have demonstrated that attendees show a slight advantage over their peers for a year or so and then, thanks to the mind numbing educational system, those gains disappear. Similarly, a relatively new program, 21st Century Community Learning Centers, kicked off in 1995 with a budget of $847,000 now is funded to the tune of nearly $1 billion and this after school program has not yet demonstrated any “influence on academic performance”, nor much else of value.

What is the answer? Congress must end the federal government’s stranglehold on education and return its governance to the States and to local communities. The typical one-size-fits-all federal answer to everything, combined with the use of massive amounts of taxpayer funding to coerce submission to its failed programs, has produced an education system that threatens the future of the nation.

As far back as 1983, the National Commission on Excellence in Education released a report, A Nation at Risk, that warned, “if an unfriendly power had attempted to impose on American the mediocre educational performance that exists today, we might well have viewed it as an act of war.” The war on the future of our children's minds continues."

Taxpayer Billions Wasted on Education by Alan Caruba -- Capitalism Magazine

"---“Despite the huge infusion of federal cash,” writes McCluskey, “and the near tripling of overall per pupil funding since 1965, national academic performance has not improved. Math and reading scores have stagnated, graduation rates have flat lined, and researchers have shown numerous billion-dollar federal programs to be failures.”

“The nation as a whole must determine if the federal presence in American education should continue at all.”

Here’s my answer: NO! Being fond of the U.S. Constitution, no amount of reading reveals the word “education” anywhere in it. Indeed, the framers of the Constitution did not want the federal government involved in education, a requirement of an educated electorate that they understood should be the province of local communities and of the States.---"

CJR's liberal slant - The Washington Times: Editorials/OP-ED - August 15, 2004

"The Columbia Journalism Review styles itself as "America's premier media monitor." It considers itself an objective observer of journalistic trends and bias, but it has achieved a well-deserved reputation for a blatantly left-of-center focus. So, it should hardly be surprising that its recent analysis of political spin, which, admittedly, pervades the 2004 presidential campaign, proved to be a poorly disguised hit-piece on the Bush White House.---"

The Washington Times -- America's Newspaper

"Chronic overeating called an addiction

"Just as federal health officials defined obesity as an illness, researchers at the University of Florida say mounting evidence suggests chronic overeating may be a substance abuse disorder and should be considered an addiction."

"---Like swallows heading for Capistrano, liberals are drawn toward those institutions where they have the power to impose their beliefs and ignore any knowledge that says otherwise. Such institutions are usually dominated by the left.

Only belatedly have people with other ideas begun to challenge the liberal dominance in these institutions. Among the fiercest battlegrounds are the courts. Here anyone who challenges the liberal dominance is certain to be not merely criticized but targeted for a whole campaign of smears, a process that put a new verb in our language, "to Bork."

The left understands that power trumps knowledge. The question is whether the rest of us will realize that and try to keep such power from becoming a a monopoly of the left.

We don't need limousine liberals telling farmers how to farm, builders how to build and everybody else how to live their lives. That power is too dangerous to let it trump knowledge."
Getting dumped on

"We have new garbage service in Stockton with more bins to store and increased fees to cover costs so we can meet mandatory recycling and clean-water standards.

What a joke. I watched them dump all the bins from all the houses on the block into the same truck. Why bother?"

B.J. Wilson


Saturday, August 14, 2004
Democrats peddle their own unique truth

"---A handful of Kerry's ''band of brothers'' are traveling around with his campaign. Most of the rest, including a majority of his fellow swift boat commanders and 254 swiftees from Kerry's Coastal Squadron One, are opposed to his candidacy. That is an amazing ratio and, if snot-nosed American media grandees don't think there's a story there, maybe they ought to consider another line of work. To put it in terms they can understand, imagine if Dick Cheney campaigned for the presidency on the basis of his time at Halliburton, and a majority of the Halliburton board and 80 percent of the stockholders declared he was unfit for office. More to the point, on the swift vets' first major allegation -- Christmas in Cambodia -- the Kerry campaign has caved.---"

Saving Social Security - The Washington Times: Commentary - August 14, 2004

"As the respected Heritage Foundation notes, some 39 countries have adopted pension reform that includes personal retirement accounts (PRAs). Even Russia is considering some form of PRAs for its workers.

Yet, we in this country diddle around, with many people unwilling to face our serious problem. Today is the 69th anniversary of Franklin Roosevelt's signing of the original Social Security Act. By 2037, Social Security will be completely broke. The solution of liberal Democrats, who vehemently oppose PRAs, is higher taxes and lower benefits.---"

Kerry 'couldn't think' on 9/11 - The Washington Times: Nation/Politics - August 14, 2004
By Bill Sammon

"PORTLAND, Ore. — The White House, irked by lingering questions about whether President Bush responded quickly enough to the September 11 terrorist attacks, yesterday slammed Sen. John Kerry for being bewildered by the attacks.

White House Communications Director Dan Bartlett took Mr. Kerry to task for questioning the president's decision to remain in a Florida classroom for five minutes after learning of the attacks. He noted that the Massachusetts Democrat acknowledged last month that when the terrorists struck, Mr. Kerry was at a Democratic leadership meeting where "nobody could think."---"

Recordnet.comTime to calm down a little
Going back and forth on the presidential options

Published Saturday, August 14, 2004

"Many of us have a presidential candidate we support and believe is the best choice.

We think his policies are best and will be good for our nation and the world. We feel the policies of the other guy aren't the best and will result in bad things.

Only time will tell who is
chosen and what will happen.

But it's time to take things down a notch.

For those who support President Bush, the election of John Kerry won't mean the world ceases to spin. Terrorists won't run across the border willy-nilly. We won't all be cogs in a big government machine.

We might do well. We might do poorly. We'll survive just fine.

By the same token, for those who support Kerry, the
re-election of Bush doesn't mean the sky explodes.

We won't see storm troopers in the streets. We won't be sending Democrats to re-education camps. It won't happen.

For better or for worse, we'll get along just fine.

So calm down just a bit. Support your man. State your convictions. But remember we live in a great nation that will go on.

Far too many people do live in places where political defeat can lead to death and chaos.

For us to pretend we're anywhere close to that is an insult to that suffering."

Pat Edaburn

Friday, August 13, 2004
Kitty Litter
Friday, August 13, 2004


"When Kerry realised he had a problem with his Christmas in Cambodia story, he turned to his biographer, Douglas Brinkley, for help. Pat, at KerryHaters, has read and reviewed “Tour Of Duty” in KerryHaters several months ago. But when he heard that Brinkley was going to try to rescue Kerry on this, Pat sat down yesterday and performed a Herculean task of going through Brinkley’s book page by page and has written a first report.---"
Backlash of Kerry claims
San Francisco Examiner, by Kathleen Antrim

Original Article

Posted By:IowaDad, 8/13/2004 2:33:03 PM

"John F. Kerry's campaign for president is imploding. And he knows it. /snip/ Mr. Kerry, as a journalist, a columnist and most importantly as an American citizen, I am asking you to release your Vietnam records and your journal (in its entirety) to the American people.

There may be no hope on the way for Kerry." -- Main Page:

'Amy Ridenour: Global warming suits -- AGs ignore science, Constitution' -

"THE ATTORNEYS GENERAL of eight states -- California, Connecticut, Iowa, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont and Wisconsin -- have filed a lawsuit against five of the nation's largest electricity producers. The attorneys general claim their intent is to 'curb global warming.' More likely, it is a desire for publicity and, for some, an effort to jump-start political campaigns for the higher office of governor.' (The Providence Journal)" -- Main Page:

Settling Global Warming Science'

"How many times have we heard from Al Gore and assorted European politicians that 'the science is settled' on global warming? In other words, it's 'time for action.' Climate change is, as recently stated by Hans Blix, former U.N. Chief for weapons detection in Iraq, the most important issue of our time, far more dangerous than people flying fuel-laden aircraft into skyscrapers or threatening to detonate backpack nukes in Baltimore Harbor.

Well, the science may now be settled, but not in the way Gore and Blix would have us believe. Three bombshell papers have just hit the refereed literature that knock the stuffing out of Blix's position and that the United Nations and its Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).' (Patrick J. Michaels, S. Fred Singer and David H. Douglass, TCS)"

The War on Fat--Is the size of your butt the government’s business?

"---The war on fat is the latest manifestation of a collectivist philosophy that says the government has a duty to protect "public health" by discouraging behavior that might lead to disease or injury. It also reflects an anti-capitalist perspective that views people as helpless automatons manipulated into consuming whatever big corporations choose to produce. The anti-fat crusaders want to manipulate us too, but for our own good. They seek to reshape us by reshaping the world.---"
Via -- Main Page:

'Animal Crackers'-

"The recent spate of animal rights incidents in Britain was perfectly timed to coincide with the government's upgrade of its anti-animal rights terrorism laws. Recent news reports have shown the strong and growing influence of animal rights extremists in Britain. Apart from the usual terror tactics used against employees and anyone remotely connected to Huntingdon Life Sciences, activists have more recently targeted shareholders from Montpellier, the company due to build a new research laboratory in Oxford. Threats of 'prompt action' from extremists brought the project to a screeching halt and resulted in a 19 percent drop in share prices.

Indeed, this kind of situation is not unusual in Britain, where the Animal Liberation Front and its various spin-offs have been making life hell for ordinary people and their families under the banner of preventing animal cruelty. Their actions have even forced many people to go into hiding. It has been estimated that threats from anti-vivisection militants have been costing the country ?1 billion per year in lost investments and special protection costs. (Florence Heath, TCS)" -- Main Page

"Science — and Asbestos — in the Courtroom"

"A recent study comparing x-ray analyses of asbestos-related lung damage revealed some troublesome results. An alarming discrepancy was found between conclusions drawn by physicians (certified experts called B-readers) hired by the plaintiff's lawyers and those drawn by unaffiliated physicians who reviewed the same x-rays. The B-readers, certified by the Public Health Service's National Institution for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), evaluated these chest x-rays for court cases, while the six outside consultants did not know the context from which these x-rays came, nor were they prompted to look specifically for asbestos. The results: the plaintiffs' B-readers reported that 95.9% of 492 chest x-rays had possible asbestos-related lung damage, the unaffiliated doctors found that only 4.5% of them showed possible damage. The enormous discrepancy between evaluations has called into question the system under which scientific evidence is presented in court cases." (Sagine Gousse, ACSH)

Yet Another Drug War Failure:

"---John Walters, the head of the Office of National Drug Control Policy, recently startled the media by admitting that the $3.3 billion Plan Colombia, now in its fourth year, has failed to make a significant dent in the amount of cocaine flowing out of that country. Walters added hastily, however, that he expected to see substantial progress in the next year or so.

His comments are the latest in a familiar and dreary pattern. Each new initiative in Washington's international campaign to stem the supply of illegal drugs is launched with great fanfare. During the early phases, isolated examples of success are touted as evidence that the overall strategy is working. Ultimately, though, reality intrudes and it becomes clear that the drug supply is as plentiful as ever. Thrown on the defensive, drug warriors admit that the task has proven more difficult than anticipated but argue that if we stay the course, success is just around the corner. When such predictions prove faulty often enough, the existing initiative is quietly buried and a new one is launched with the appropriate fanfare.---"

Issues 2004 Whats New:

NHS's Triumphs

"Dr. Madsen Pirie of the Adam Smith Institute notes a new report on the country's NHS socialized medicine scheme (which many, like this second letter-writer, would like to see replicated in the United States): The healthcare research group, Dr Foster, reports today in the British Medical Journal that one in every ten patients admitted to NHS hospitals in Britain will suffer at the hands of medical errors. Such errors contribute to the deaths of 72,000 people a year, and are directly blamed for the deaths of 40,000 people. Medical errors in the NHS now constitute the fourth largest cause of death in Britain. The charity Action Against Medical Accidents states that the figures under-estimate total errors by not including those which take place at the primary care level of family doctors, and are based only on reported errors. The figures do not include hospital-acquired infections."

The Green Fever Subsides by Alan Caruba -- Capitalism Magazine

"---Despite their rhetoric, the environmentalists who keep the movement going with countless organizations, by lobbying the government, and with a constant propaganda program, care little about a healthy, growing, successful economy. They say they do, but so much of what passes for environmentalism is actually a constant attack on the most basic elements of the nation’s economy.---"

Neal Boortz: War stories

"---Now … let’s turn the calendar pages to early August, 2004. A group of Vietnam veterans step forward with some questions and charges about John Kerry’s record of service in Vietnam, the very record that John has presented to the American people as the sole and exclusive reason (save for their hatred of George Bush) that he should be the 44th President of the United States. If the media’s treatment of the George Bush AWOL charges were a guide, we would expect to see an immediate feeding frenzy from the mainstream media. Demands would be made of the Kerry campaign that records, documents and any and all other available evidence be presented to prove Kerry’s claims of heroism.---"

Neal Boortz: War stories

"The mask is off. Further denials are useless. After the events of the past seven days the ingrained leftist, pro-Democratic Party bias of the nation’s mainstream media has been fully exposed. All it took was for a certain Vietnam veteran to write a book daring to question the war hero status of Democratic presidential hopeful John Kerry. Media lips are now drawn into a permanent snarl; the knives are out and the scent of blood is in the air. Circle the wagons and may the effort to protect the Democratic candidate proceed.---" Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze


"---On one side, you have a candidate who for four years has demonstrated his willingness to go after Islamic terrorists and kill them outright. No negotiations, no pandering, no waiting for U.N. approval. Just a commitment to do whatever is necessary to preserve and protect the United States of America. That's the Bush record.

On the other side, you have an appeaser. This is not in dispute. The Poodle is more concerned with what France thinks than what the United States needs. He is also minute he is for the war, the next against it, and so on. Is this lack of resolve what we need when facing down the most vicious enemy we have ever faced in our history? I think not. Ask anyone with experience dealing with Islamic radicals. They view sensitivity as weakness. When they heard The Poodle making his comments about "a more sensitive war on terror" they must have cheered. How do you say "bring it on, Mr. Sensitivity" in Arabic anyway? Face it, November's choice is becoming more and more clear.

A more sensitive war on terror? Not sensitive, but weak. Very, very weak." Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze:

"We've had a flurry of news coverage and political activity this past week on the Fair Tax plan. In response to a question at a town hall meeting, President Bush said that the idea of a national retail sales tax is worth some attention. John Kerry jumped right in with the absurd statement that 'Families already squeezed by rising health care costs, gas costs and college costs would have to carry a whole new tax burden.'

Now ... those of you who are familiar with the plan for a national retail sales tax know that Kerry's statement is an absolute lie. Families caught in a financial squeeze would actually end up with more money in their pockets under the Fair Tax plan then they have under our current tax system.

So ... the question is this. Is Kerry simply uninformed about the details of the Fair Tax, or does he know the truth and decided that this would be a good time to demagogue the Fair Tax in order to play the class warfare game.---"

Dems Issue Gag Order on Courts

"---The president says, "We will not stand for judges who undermine democracy by legislating from the bench and try to remake the culture of America by court order." When a Supreme Court vacancy occurs, we expect the president to stand down the Daschle Senate and appoint another Scalia or Thomas.

Kerry has flip-flopped on what sort of litmus tests he might apply to his appointments, but it seems clear that he wants to appoint judges who will remake U.S. culture by court order. He just won't admit it on national television, and speakers at the Democratic National Convention were indeed "issued muzzles," as U.S. Sen. Zell Miller, D-Ga., charged on "Meet the Press."

Mrs. Schlafly is the author of the new book The Supremacists: The Tyranny of Judges and How to Stop It (Spence Publishing Co).

Of Medals and Men: Understanding the Veterans' Ire

"---Not that the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth need any help telling their story but I'm compelled to wade into the John Kerry/Vietnam debate. These veterans who served side-by-side with John Kerry certainly have a much clearer view of the man and, by virtue of their service, have ample right to judge his performance. I'm angered and disturbed by the fallout from the left. Please indulge a veteran from another generation to weigh in.---"

Unfit for Discussion

"---Despite the hype, the Democrats really don't have much else to go on this year, which is why they don't dare dissociate themselves from Michael Moore, the principal purveyor of the abominable "Bush lied" lie. So the Democrats don't have much standing to complain about "negative" campaigning.

Nor does Senator Kerry -- at least with respect to this issue. He is the one who "opened the door" by making his Vietnam service the centerpiece of his campaign. If his honorable service is relevant, so is the possibility of his dishonorable service.

This shouldn't be about "fairness" anyway, but about informing the public. If the stunning allegations in Unfit for Command are true, they paint a picture of a man who simply cannot be trusted to be president, much less a wartime president. So what we ought to be focused on is whether they are true.

Concerning the veracity of the charges, consider that the "Swiftees" are not GOP mouthpieces -- some are Democrats. They approached Regnery Publishing with their book proposal, not the other way around. Their account is based on their firsthand knowledge -- not hearsay -- and would be admissible in any court proceeding involving these issues.---"

New York Post Online Edition: postopinion:
August 13, 2004 --

"What I want to know is why Bush's stint in the National Guard merited intense scrutiny from the mainstream media four years ago and again during this election cycle, but the many confusing issues regarding Kerry's Vietnam experience are completely ignored ('Kerry's Attempt To Squelch Vets,' Editorial, Aug. 10)?

This is a serious character issue that needs to be explored."

John Nerz
Andover, Mass. "

Fact and fiction - The Washington Times: Editorials/OP-ED - August 13, 2004

"---Finally, concerning the assertion that Mr. Kerry was shot at by the Khmer Rouge during his Christmas 1968 visit to Cambodia, it should be noted that the Khmer Rouge didn't take the field until the Easter Offensive of 1972, when the Vietnamese forces that had attacked the Cambodians initially in March 1970 pulled out of Cambodia to attack the U.S. and Vietnamese forces in Vietnam. Only Vietnamese Communist soldiers were found on the battlefields of Cambodia in 1970-72.---"

A question of character - The Washington Times: Editorials/OP-ED - August 13, 2004

"---While the full truth about how Mr. Kerry won his medals may never be known, we do know this: Mr. Kerry has backed away from the more lurid charges of genocide against U.S. forces he made when he came home. He misled his biographer, Douglas Brinkley, when he denied being at the Kansas City meeting of Vietnam Veterans Against the War, where the assassination of Sens. Tower, Stennis and Thurmond was discussed. His campaign staff tried to get former VVAW men to disremember that Mr. Kerry was there.

Now we have the issue of whether Mr. Kerry has told the truth about a critical moment in his life, that Christmas Eve of 1968 inside Cambodia, where young John Kerry was taking fire as U.S. leaders were lying to the nation by denying we were in Cambodia.---"

A question of character - The Washington Times: Editorials/OP-ED - August 13, 2004

"---If what John O'Neill writes is true — and he has invited Mr. Kerry to sue him for libel — Mr. Kerry has falsified a central event of his life. For Mr. Kerry has used this story repeatedly, and it has been used by admirers to explain how the idealistic young warrior lost his faith in the U.S. government.

Nor is this an unserious matter. For the charges against Mr. Kerry in "Unfit for Command" go to an issue the media failed to address in 1992, to the detriment of this country: the issue of character and credibility.

Is John Kerry a brave warrior being viciously maligned by swift boat veterans who hate him for having turned against the war and telling the truth about U.S. war crimes? Or has John Kerry been lying about his service in Vietnam and slandering the honorable service of the swift boat veterans to advance his own career, in which case, he should be read out of the company of decent men, not elevated to the presidency?---"

Kerry's Cambodia confusion - The Washington Times: Editorials/OP-ED - August 13, 2004

"---But why would Mr. Kerry tell such a misleading tale on the floor of the Senate? Throughout his political career, Mr. Kerry has referred to his Christmas in Cambodia as the moment when he became disillusioned with the American political leadership, and why he became such a vociferous opponent of the war upon his return from duty. Indeed, it is a moving lesson, as he recounted in 1986 on the Senate floor: "I have that memory which is seared — seared — in me that says to me, before we send another generation into harm's way we have a responsibility in the U.S. Senate to go the last step, to make the best effort possible in order to avoid that kind of conflict." But it didn't happen. And what are Americans to make of a presidential candidate whose life-altering moment was a figment of his imagination?"

Church, state and politics - The Washington Times: Commentary - August 13, 2004

"---It has taken a long time to establish a simple no-endorsement rule that both church and state can live with. Start expanding it to a ban on indirect, inferred, or just we-can-tell-what-he-meant endorsements, and we're in uncharted waters. We will have gone from modus vivendi to terra incognita, where the law usually winds up when it's pushed beyond reason and tolerance.

Why disrupt the peace we have all enjoyed for so long, no matter our politics/religion? Instead of obscure debates over the subtext of a minister's sermon, and whether an endorsement can be deduced from his — or her — words, why not just let preachers preach? Why not live and let live? That's a pretty good rule, too."

Thursday, August 12, 2004
: "August 12, 2004
Radiology group expels member over testimony

'For the first time in its history, the American College of Radiology has expelled a member for giving inaccurate expert testimony. Dr. E. James Tourje, a neuroradiologist at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, was expelled [last month] for violating the ACR code of ethics, which states that expert testimony should be nonpartisan, scientifically correct, and clinically accurate.' Dr. Tourje had testified on behalf of the plaintiff in two malpractice cases, both of which resulted in defense verdicts. (''Expert' witness gets booted from ACR', Diagnostic Imaging Online, Jul. 8; Arati Murti, 'Stat Read: Election-Year Politics Push Medical Liability Skirmishes to Trenches', Imaging Economics, Aug.).

In a case several years ago, Judge Richard Posner of the Seventh Circuit gave impetus to the then-nascent trend toward professional self-regulation of expert testimony, writing in an opinion that 'this kind of professional self-regulation furthers rather than impedes the cause of justice. More policing of expert testimony is required, not less.' (Russell M. Pelton, 'Professing Professional Conduct: AANS Raises the Bar for Expert Testimony', AANS Bulletin, Spring 2002. In the latest ABA Journal, Terry Carter discusses the controversy and in particular the formation of the Coalition and Center for Ethical Medical Testimony to promote efforts by associations to act against what Peter Huber has called malpractice by mouth. (("M.D. With a Mission", ABA Journal, Aug.). The organized plaintiff's bar is completely apoplectic about the trend: for its views, see Stephanie Mencimer, "The White Wall", Legal Affairs, Mar-Apr.; Steve Ellman, "Code of Silence", Miami Daily Business Review, Jun. 25, 2003.

Posted by Walter Olson at August 12, 2004 12:04 AM | TrackBack

Media Research Center Home Page - 8/12/2004 5:09:06 PM

CyberAlert: Exposing Media Bias Daily
Thursday, August 12 Edition:
• ABC Sees “Harsh” Attack from Bush While Kerry is “Hitting Back”
• On Kerry’s Cambodia Backtrack Only FNC Cares, Sawyer All Tease
• Media Treatment of Kerry Vietnam Record Echoes Jones & Troopers
• Rundown of CyberAlert Items on Coverage of Kerry in Vietnam
Main site provides links to individual articles. TA

Article--An Epidemic of Obesity Myths:

"Overblown rhetoric about the 'obesity epidemic' has itself reached epidemic proportions. Trial lawyers increasingly see dollar signs where the rest of us see dinner. Activists and bureaucrats are proposing radical 'solutions' like zoning restrictions on restaurants and convenience stores, as well as extra taxes and warning labels on certain foods.

Relying on peer-reviewed publications and esteemed health experts, this booklet documents the extent to which many researchers and academics are actively questioning the obesity hype. Have you heard that obesity kills 400,000 Americans a year? That it costs $117 billion? That 65 percent of Americans are overweight or obese? It turns out that these statistics are wildly exaggerated, and that most of the increased risks from excess weight actually result from physical inactivity.---"


"On July 4, 1776, America's founding fathers signed their names to the Declaration of Independence in an effort to affirm basic liberties. But they never dreamed that anyone would someday attempt to strip the American people of the fundamental freedom to control what we eat and drink. In the spirit of throwing off the shackles of harassing powers, we offer our Declaration of Food Independence.

Click here to add your John Hancock to this Declaration and tell the food cops that they can't control you -- or your diet.---"

Your Kids, PETA's Pawns

How the animal rights movement targets children

"Everything kids see — in school, on television, in magazines, and on the Internet — shapes their development. But few parents realize the threat posed to their children by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and the growing animal-rights movement.---" -- Main Page:

For the article the below comment refers to click here.

"---Guess The Mercury must've missed the press release on the Danish Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation repudiating the Danish Committees on Scientific Dishonesty's unscientific and dishonest attack on Lomborg. Not that that's really a surprise, the prophets of the Green-Left, their acolytes and media machine were tireless in their efforts to silence Lomborg while only disinterested scientists and a few honest journalists fought to air any dissent. We might be able to understand the tawdry acts of pop-science rag SciAm but the disgraceful behaviour of once-great journal Nature was unforgivable. What a sordid little episode this has all been."

Thomas Sowell: Random thoughts

"---It is a shame that the broadcast networks did not provide gavel-to-gavel coverage of the Democratic convention, the way C-SPAN did. If the public had seen the parade of weirdos and hustlers on stage, it would have given a far clearer picture of the Democratic Party than any of the party's official pronouncements gave."

Thomas Sowell: Random thoughts

"---Both egalitarians and those who think they have a blanket superiority to the rest of us have missed the point. We are all superior to each other -- and are all inferior to each other. It all depends on when and what. The economic disasters of socialism and communism come from assuming a blanket superiority of those who want to run a whole economy.---"

Thomas Sowell: Random thoughts

"---Before this year, had you ever heard anyone claim that four months in combat makes someone qualified for four years as President of the United States -- with no questions asked about what they did in the intervening decades?---"

Thomas Sowell: Random thoughts

"---People do not become either "brilliant" or "stupid" just because the media keep describing them that way. The high correlation between people's supposed brilliance or stupidity and their agreement or disagreement with liberal ideology should warn us against taking such characterizations seriously.---"

Thomas Sowell: Random thoughts

"---The media often mention "ultra-conservatives" but never "ultra-liberals." Have ultra-liberals become extinct, gotten lost, or met with foul play? We cannot ignore the fate of fellow human beings, even if we differ with them politically. At the very least, we can report them as missing persons.---"

Thomas Sowell: Random thoughts

"---Alaska is much larger than France and Germany -- combined. Yet its population is less than one-tenth that of New York City. Keep that in mind the next time you hear some environmentalist hysteria about the danger of "spoiling" Alaska by drilling for oil in an area smaller than Dulles Airport.---"

Larry Elder: A million black voters disenfranchised

"---John Fund, a Wall Street Journal columnist and author of "Stealing Elections," a new book on election fraud, agrees with Kirsanow. How did Kerry come up with one million? Fund says that the million number came from a national extrapolation of the 57,000 Floridians who -- according to the August 2001 report of the Commission on Civil Rights (which used some statistical extrapolations, hypothetical scenarios, and so on) -- were denied the right to vote. The commission didn't repeat that number in their final April 2003 report, instead conceding that "it is impossible to determine the extent of the disenfranchisement."

So is John Kerry intentionally misleading the public? "I think," said Fund, "he's creating an alternate conceptualization of reality."


Robert Novak: Bush's uncertain trumpet

"---A rosier Labor Department measurement is the household survey of job increases, which showed a gain of 629,000 in July, 1,181,000 since December and 2,056,000 over the last 12 months. Furthermore, the July unemployment rate is 5.5 percent -- a low rate and exactly what it was in July 1996 when Bill Clinton was seeking re-election. In contrast, unemployment was 7.7 percent in July 1992 as the senior George Bush began his descent.

That these favorable numbers are not trumpeted by Bush's political operation suggests an uncertain trumpet. Hearing no battle cry, Republican loyalists are easily unnerved by even questionable statistics. They need to hear about the future. Bush's tax reductions, particularly dividend and capital gains cuts, have revived the economy. But even ardent Bush-backers yearn for his plans to promote further economic growth.---" Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze

"I've told you before about the website This website will provide you with phony user names and passwords to get into news websites that require registration. Now has a registration process of their own, but only for those who are part of the "register to log on" crowd. It's priceless. Take a look." Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze


"It looks like all might not be lost when it comes to the idea of replacing the federal income tax with a national sales tax (the Fair tax plan.) The idea was floated recently by Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert while he was promoting his new book and he intimated that the Bush administration might be open to such a plan, getting people's hopes up that something might actually get done on the issue. Unfortunately, he came out later and clarified his comments, saying that he supported the idea, but didn't know of a plan by the Bush administration to take up the proposal in a second term. Oh well. But now there seems to be a slight glimmer of hope, even thought it's not much - it's still something. Campaigning in Florida at an "Ask President Bush" forum, somebody asked the president about the idea of a national sales tax. Bush said "It's an interesting idea. You know, I'm not exactly sure how big the national sales tax is going to have to be, but it's the kind of interesting idea that we ought to explore seriously." Two things here: one, he said going to be...not might be. That's encouraging. The other is he said it ought to be explored seriously. There's still hope to abolish the IRS and end the confiscation of income once and for all."

Brothers Band Together Against Kerry
by Ann Coulter
Posted Aug 12, 2004

"Democrats haven't been this upset about an American engaging in free speech since Juanita Broaddrick opened her yap."

Another Veitnam Vets Ad Blasts Kerry's Record -- from Vietnam Veterans for Truth

Check out this new online ad "Not in My Band of Brothers"

New York Post Online Edition: postopinion:

"Since Kerry is the one who brought up Vietnam as a campaign issue, he should immediately disclose all of his war records.
The truth will certainly quiet any unfounded allegations.

Unleashing lawyers to intimidate and threaten broadcasters airing unsolicited testimonials from vets who served with Kerry is cowardly, and it smacks of Kerry having something to hide."
John Dell
Staten Island
In defense of self-defense

"I read in The Record an article about a man who killed one person and injured six others with a baseball bat.

The broadcast news said his victims were three men (one dead), two women and two children.

How lucky we all are that none of his victims had one of those horrible, evil, nasty handguns available.

If they had, the victims might have been able to defend themselves before the police arrived. We can't have that now, can we?"

By Bob Walsh

Wednesday, August 11, 2004
Minority journalists embarrassed themselves at convention
The Dallas Morning News, by RUBEN NAVARRETTE

Original Article

Posted By:Dreadnought, 8/11/2004 2:12:31 AM

"When more than 7,000 minority journalists came together last week for the UNITY: Journalists of Color convention, one felt a sense of pride. But after a sudden outburst of partisan politics, pride gave way to embarrassment. President Bush and Democratic nominee John Kerry both addressed – separately – the Washington conference staged by a consortium of four minority journalists associations. Mr. Kerry spoke first and was received enthusiastically..."

: "August 11, 2004
Target: general aviation services

Ten years ago, in one of the few significant liability reforms to emerge from Washington, D.C. in modern times, Congress provided litigation relief to small-aircraft makers, most notably by cutting off lawsuits filed more than 18 years after an aircraft was sold. As was widely reported, general aviation thereafter enjoyed a substantial recovery from its previous slump, with significant numbers of planes again being manufactured and sold. But trial lawyers, casting around for parties to sue after crashes, simply began naming everyone else in sight: flight instructors, 'mechanics, manufacturers of replacement parts, fuel suppliers and airports. Aviation is again in decline.' Frasca Field in the college community of Champaign-Urbana, Ill. has 'shut down its flight training, recurrent training and mechanics' services a year ago because of skyrocketing insurance costs brought on by a lawsuit in which the field itself was found not guilty.

'The case stemmed from the 1996 death of a man who was a passenger in a Piper J-3 Cub that crashed in a cornfield near Thomasboro. Federal Aviation Administrators inspectors found no mechanical problems. The National Transportation Safety Board said the accident was caused by pilot error. Frasca Air Services Owner Rudy Frasca said the final legal defense price tag was about $600,000. 'We won the case, but we lost the field,' said Tom Frasca.' Much more here (J. Philip Bloomer, 'Liability costs ground Frasca", Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette, Jun. 20)."

Posted by Walter Olson at August 11, 2004 12:06 AM | TrackBack

1:43 PM

Overlawyered: Another med-mal insurer collapses:
August 11, 2004

"This time it's the Hospital Casualty Co. of Oklahoma, a subsidiary of the Oklahoma Hospital Association founded in 1977 by 12 local hospitals, capsized by nursing-home suits and by the general Sooner-get-sued atmosphere in its home state. Must have been mismanaged, our friends in the plaintiff's bar will say. Earlier this year, the Physicians Liability Insurance Co., owned by the Oklahoma Medical Association and the state's largest med-mal insurer, 'was placed under formal supervision of the Insurance Department because the company didn't have money to pay anticipated claims.' Another mismanaged outfit, no doubt. More details at Point of Law, where I also discuss the anguish felt by California insurance regulators over the relative lack of interest among low-income drivers in taking advantage of a scheme to rob Peter in Pacific Palisades to pay Paul in Pico-Union."

Posted by Walter Olson at August 11, 2004 12:48 AM | TrackBack

Bozell's News Column -- 08/10/2004 -- Free Pass on Democratic Legends -- Media Research Center

"---What’s depressing here for the American people is that the "mainstream press" is so relentlessly partisan that they have so utterly failed to see it as their job to explore the full biography of a man who stands a very decent chance of becoming the next president.

Since 1999, this national press corps devoted weeks to unproven charges and shadowy assertions that George W. Bush was hiding things about his service in the Texas Air National Guard. This national press corps has treated every nasty Democratic soft-money group and Michael Moore in-kind contribution to the Kerry campaign as just a sign of great liberal vigor. The Kerry war stories were their test to see if they’re reliable watchdogs, or if they’re just another coordinated part of the Democratic campaign machine. The results are in."

ACSH > News >Killing the Goose (That Lays the Rx Eggs) [from Scripps Howard News Service]:

"---Research-based pharmaceutical and biotech companies in the United States produce over 90% of the world's new drug discoveries each year. Patent protections -- and profits -- provide incentives for innovation. (How many new drugs do you know of being launched from Canada and other countries with price controls? Virtually none.) Advocates of the bill and others clamoring for imports of cheap drugs are myopic and reckless. Their efforts, if successful, will choke off the flow of innovative pharmaceuticals -- and, in the interim -- will leave Americans at risk of illness and perhaps death as ineffective, diluted, toxic, bogus pharmaceuticals find their way into our pharmacies."

Elizabeth M. Whelan, Sc.D., M.P.H., is president of the American Council on Science and Health."

Welcome to ACSH:


"In response to the the latest press release from the advocacy group called the Center for Science in the Public Interest, some facts about the American Council on Science and Health (ACSH)... " -- Main Page:

"Are Specialized Gasoline Blends Obsolete?' -

''As recently as the early 1990s the nation's gasoline supply was fungible. The same regular, mid-grade, and premium fuel was sold from coast to coast. But today, we have a bewildering variety of gasoline recipes in use across the country. Each of these specialized blends was designed to help clean the air, but the decade-old track record for the experiment in boutique fuels indicates that it has done more economic harm than environmental good.' (Ben Lieberman, TCS)" -- Main Page:

"'My Asbestos Patients' -

'Of those 600,000 asbestos claimants, 34,000 are in Cleveland, Ohio. Some of those are my patients. Some worked on the assembly line at auto plants, some only in the cafeteria. None of them has any clinical evidence of asbestosis. But all of them are eagerly awaiting the day their check comes in.' (Sydney Smith, TCS)" DNC Ad Says Bush Lost Manufacturing Jobs:
But even Clinton lost manufacturing jobs in his second term. Economists say changing the tax code won't do much to help.
August 11, 2004Modified:August 11, 2004Summary

"The Democratic National Committee released an ad Aug. 6 saying 2.7 million manufacturing jobs had been lost under Bush. That's true, but ignores the fact that manufacturing jobs started their decline three years before Bush took office.
The ad also says 'Bush protects tax breaks favoring corporations that move their headquarters overseas' and that Kerry would 'end job-killing tax loopholes.' But as we've said before , 'offshoring' accounts for just a small fraction of jobs that are lost, and even Democratic economists say changing the tax code won't end the overseas job drain anyway.---"

The Collectivist Convention: The Democrats' Bait-and-Switch Philosophy by Robert W. Tracinski -- Capitalism Magazine

"---The Democrats have been told that they must not seem "anti-American" in time of war; that they have to try to capture the patriotic American "heartland"; that they have to be "optimistic" and "Reagan-esque." And so they tried to appeal to American values and ideals—all of which are implicitly based on individualism. But they have to harness those values to their collectivist agenda. Hence the following grotesque paragraph, from a crucial passage in Kennedy's speech:

"It was no accident that Massachusetts was founded as a commonwealth, a place where authority belongs not to a single ruler, but to the people themselves, joined together for the common good. The old system was based on inequality.... The colonists knew they could do better, just as we know we can do better today—but only if we all work together, only if we all reach out together, only if we all come together for the common good.... America is a compact, a bargain, a contract. It says that all of us are connected. Our fates are intertwined.... Our Constitution binds us together."

In fact, the Constitution exists to protect our rights and to limit the power of government. But Kennedy believes it exists to "bind us together" to collect our "common wealth" for the "common good." This is not an appeal to American values, but a total inversion of them."

Ben Shapiro: A threat to the republic

"---Lenin wrote most of Iskra's articles and did massive fund raising across Europe. He used his burgeoning power to promote his pamphlet "What Is To Be Done?" His thesis was simple: "The organization of the revolutionaries must consist first and foremost of people who make revolutionary activity their profession." This vision of a vanguard elite, which would in turn give birth to the idea of a totalitarian cadre leading a blind proletariat, revolutionized the idea of Marxist revolution. The people were stupid and had to be led by the hand to revolution, Lenin believed.---

"Lenin had an "excuse" for undermining the czarist system of government -- it was dictatorial, even if Lenin and his successors would end up as far more brutal dictators than any of the czars.

Michael Moore has no excuse. America is a republic, and Moore is a threat to the republic.---

"Moore isn't as dangerous as Lenin because American republicanism doesn't stand on as weak a foundation as did czarist Russia. Nevertheless, he is powerful. His invective has garnered him millions of dollars, millions of fans and a coveted seat next to Jimmy Carter at the Democratic National Convention. The vitriol of his minions approaches the brink of violence. Moore seeks to undermine faith in American republicanism, capitalism and American foreign policy. Let there be no doubt: Michael Moore is a threat to the American way of life."

Thomas Sowell: Power versus knowledge

"---What is liberalism all about? Regardless of whether the particular issue is race, agriculture, housing, or a thousand other things, liberalism is about the government telling people what to do in their lives and work.

Most of the liberals who are for ordering other people around know as little as Teresa Heinz Kerry. But they don't have to know.

It has been said that knowledge is power but, politically, power trumps knowledge.---

"Like swallows heading for Capistrano, liberals are drawn toward those institutions where they have the power to impose their beliefs and ignore any knowledge that says otherwise. Such institutions are usually dominated by the left.

Only belatedly have people with other ideas begun to challenge the liberal dominance in these institutions. Among the fiercest battlegrounds are the courts. Here anyone who challenges the liberal dominance is certain to be not merely criticized but targeted for a whole campaign of smears, a process that put a new verb in our language, "to Bork."

The left understands that power trumps knowledge. The question is whether the rest of us will realize that too -- and try to keep such power from becoming or remaining a monopoly of the left.

We don't need limousine liberals telling farmers how to farm, builders how to build, and everybody else how to live their lives. That power is too dangerous to let it trump knowledge."

Walter E. Williams: Economics 101

"Economic ignorance allows us to fall easy prey to political charlatans and demagogues, so how about a little Economics 101?

How many times have we heard "free tuition," "free health care," and free you-name-it? If a particular good or service is truly free, we can have as much of it as we want without the sacrifice of other goods or services. Take a "free" library; is it really free? The answer is no. Had the library not been built, that $50 million could have purchased something else. That something else sacrificed is the cost of the library. While users of the library might pay a zero price, zero price and free are not one and the same. So when politicians talk about providing something free, ask them to identify the beneficent Santa Claus or tooth fairy.---" Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze:

"More liberal lunacy at government schools....A California school district is considering a new policy that could cause students to be expelled for making others feel left out. What a bunch of bureaucratic morons." Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze:

"---Hillary says that the Bush administration believes that America is great because of rich people. Hillary believes that America is great because of government. Which scenario feels more accurate to you? How, after all, do people become rich? By living the American dream, that's how. By taking advantage of whatever freedom and economic liberty might be left in this country, and using their willingness to work hard and make the difficult decisions to create wealth, both for themselves and for our economy. Think about this: It is impossible for someone to create personal wealth without adding to our national wealth and enhancing our economy.---" Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze: "THE HILDABEAST ACCUSES GOP OF ELECTION FRAUD

"They just can't let go. Speaking to a bunch of union members at the New York state AFL-CIO convention yesterday, Hillary Clinton urged them to register as many new voters as they could, because she says Republicans will try to disqualify or discourage Democrats from voting. Huh?

More Florida 2000 sour grapes. The left cannot let go of their made-up fantasy that the 2000 presidential election was stolen from them. What you're seeing here is the excuse groundwork being laid by the Democrats in anticipation of a Kerry/Edwards defeat. They know he might not win, but they want to be able to accuse George Bush of stealing yet another election.---"

Kerry's Damning Past

"---But what Kerry did in Vietnam is not the real issue. It's what he did when he came back to the safety of U.S. shores that rankles so many who served this country. John Kerry lied about what he had seen in Vietnam and impugned the integrity of everyone who had served with him. Kerry testified before Congress on April 22, 1971, that his fellow sailors and soldiers had "raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in a fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks and generally ravaged the countryside of Vietnam. ... " A few days later, Kerry went on "Meet the Press" saying that he, personally, had "committed atrocities" in Vietnam, as well as accusing other American servicemen -- the men he now refers to as his "band of brothers" -- of doing the same.

Kerry doesn't like to talk about these gross fabrications now, hoping that people will remember only the stories of his own heroism, not his attacks on the honor of the men who served with him in Vietnam. But for many of those who remember Kerry's bitter and false statements, he will never be fit to become commander-in-chief."

Unfit for command? -- The Washington Times:

"I stayed up late last night and read from cover to cover the book 'Unfit for Command -- Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry.' An impartial reader (if there is still such a beast in this election season) would have to conclude that either the book is a pack of lies or John Kerry is in fact a reckless, lying man who misrepresented the facts in order to receive medals he didn't deserve, and is indeed unfit to command even a tug boat, let alone the United States military as president.

The book appears to be meticulously researched and reported. It is replete with copious footnotes, a detailed index and two appendices. First-hand witnesses are named and quoted verbatim to support each specific, shocking charge. Each charge of false heroics is logically presented. Theauthors quote the official Navy citation and then present the purported eyewitnesstestimony that refutes the official finding. The witnesses who are summoned forth are officers and men who served simultaneously with Mr. Kerry in Coastal Division 11 and purport to be eyewitnesses to the events in question.---

"There has been some confusion about whether the witnesses against Kerry had an adequate view of his conduct, compared with the view of his supporters who were on his boat. The book explains that the swift boats usually moved in a pack of three or four on the same mission. They operated within yards of each other. Moreover, they all docked, bunked, ate and lived in the same camp.

If one compared their relations to an army company of men, the fellow junior officers who captained the tiny swift boats were the functional equivalent of squad leaders, each with their own handful of men under them. Squad leaders, operating on the same mission together, are in excellent positions to assess the performance of their fellow squad leaders. They are covering each other's flanks. The book is filled with testimony of these men, describing what they claim they clearly saw John Kerry doing and not doing.---"

Kerry Cronies Can't Bury This Book
Human Events

"---#1 at Amazon and louder Dems cry, the more they help get this story out."

Another Kerry Flip-Flop
Was He or Wasn't He in Cambodia?

from Human Events

"Now he flips on the Cambodia trip "seared" in his memory."

Another Kerry Flip-Flop
Was He or Wasn't He in Cambodia?

from Human Events

"Now he flips on the Cambodia trip "seared" in his memory."

Another Kerry Flip-Flop
Was He or Wasn't He in Cambodia?

from Human Events

"Now he flips on the Cambodia trip "seared" in his memory."

Unfit for command? - The Washington Times: Editorials/OP-ED - August 11, 2004

"---The men making the charges are almost all of his fellow officers and the higher chain of command in Kerry's coastal Division 11. The book points out that on John Kerry's Web site he has a photo of himself and 19 fellow swift boat officers, taken while they were simultaneously serving in that unit. Of those 19 fellow officers, 11 have asked him to stop using their image with him. Of the remaining eight, two are deceased, four don't wish to be involved and one is not a supporter of Kerry but didn't have the opportunity to sign the letter calling for the photo to be taken off the Web site. Only one of the 19, Skip Barker, supports Mr. Kerry.---"

A global view of our forests - The Washington Times: Commentary - August 11, 2004

"---As a forest geneticist, I observe how forests respond to insect infestation, disease, increased tree densities, wildfires, non-native pests and the like. What I see demonstrates it's time to stop cordoning off our forests from harvesting.

No matter how earnest activists may seem, or how concerned their sound bites, experience shows there are devastating consequences of abandoning active forest management.---" Letters to the Editor
Michael Moore Backpedals

“Before [filmmaker] Michael Moore causes more damage to the U.S. reputation around the world, he needs to be imprisoned for the rest of his life. Or he should be sued for all the falsehood and defamation of the character of the president of the U.S., which he has done through his 'mockumentary,' and for his traitorous activities against the U.S. while we are at war. (‘Michael Moore Backpedals on Key Premise of Documentary,’ July 28)

[Democratic presidential candidate John] Kerry did the same in 1971 and 1984 by providing aid and comfort to our enemies in N. Vietnam and Nicaragua, respectively. Now he is running for the highest office of this nation with the help of another traitor -- Michael Moore. Perhaps we are waiting for Michael Moore to earn all that he can through 'Fahrenheit 9/11' and then sue him for all the money this scoundrel has earned by befooling 'ignorant' Americans.”

Malathi D.
Rockwall, TX
Plan to slash bureaucracy wins kudos from public
State Overhaul
By Dana Nichols
Record Staff Writer
Published Wednesday, August 11, 2004

"Californians like Gov. Schwarzenegger's proposal to consolidate state government and dismiss the argument that consolidation will undermine efforts to fight water and air pollution, according to a Field Poll released today.

Almost three out of every four people surveyed agreed that California's government needs a major overhaul to eliminate unnecessary bureaucracy.---"

Tuesday, August 10, 2004
OpinionJournal - Leisure & Arts
Whose Constitution Is It, Anyway?
Judicial review has its limits.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004 12:01 a.m. EDT

"In 1985, Edwin Meese, President Reagan's attorney general, created a furor when he attacked judicial supremacy. He argued that the executive and the legislative branches of government--not just the judicial one--had an obligation to interpret the Constitution. Supreme Court rulings may be final in a given case, he granted, but they could not settle the meaning of the Constitution, which remains independent of any one interpretation. Thus the president and members of Congress were free to reject court-fabricated rules, such as the "right" to an abortion.

The legal establishment, naturally, responded as if Mr. Meese had put in a good word for anarchism. Anthony Lewis wrote that his remarks were "a calculated assault on the idea of law." Now, nearly 20 years later, Larry Kramer, dean of the Stanford Law School and a member of what he himself calls "the liberal academy," argues that Mr. Meese was right all along.---"

: "January 14, 2004
Doctors on trial

"In last week's issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association ($ access), Baltimore physician David Merenstein writes about a malpractice case which resulted in a $1 million verdict against the residency program in which he was working (though he himself was let off the hook for liability) over his failure to insist on a PSA test in a middle-aged male later diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer. Central to the plaintiff's attorney's strategy was to put on trial the mode of medical practice known as 'evidence-based medicine'. Medical blogger Ross Silverman at 'The Bloviator' (Jan. 8), who is often critical of attempts to limit malpractice litigation, nonetheless finds the result in this case 'horrible' and 'ridiculous'. MedRants (Jan. 8 and Jan. 9) comments, as does Medpundit Sydney Smith (Jan. 9). More: The LitiGator, from Michigan, also comments (Jan. 18)

In the same Jan. 9 post, Medpundit links to an illuminating Cleveland Plain Dealer piece (Harlan Spector, 'Fleeing the malpractice crisis', Jan. 4) about a neurologist who lost his malpractice insurance and moved out of Ohio after he was hit with six claims. Six claims sounds like a lot, and we keep hearing that 'problem doctors' account for a large share of the malpractice problem; but how weak were the six claims? Well, four of the six were dismissed before he had to meet with a lawyer; in a fifth, which is pending, the plaintiff has no lawyer of record. And the sixth? That resulted in a defense verdict, and was called "frivolous" by the presiding judge, who however also said: "They paid these experts who sign affidavits, and I can't throw the case out." "I feel like I'm being shot at all the time," said the defendant, Dr. Bruce Morgenstern, who moved to less litigious Colorado."

Posted by Walter Olson at January 14, 2004 12:08 AM | TrackBack

Overlawyered: "Screen me or I'll sue":
August 10, 2004

"Defensive medicine? Medblogger KevinMD winds up providing it against his better judgment when menaced by a litigious patient (Jul. 7). An anonymous post in his comments section discusses how doctors may lawfully extricate themselves from entanglement with clients who bully them with legal threats."

Posted by Walter Olson at August 10, 2004 12:38 AM | TrackBack "
"HelenKrausMDSC has it correct. If after the long discussion regarding the risks and benefits of screening you told her how much the test costs and she would have to pay for it in advance, you wouldn't have much of a problem. As for the threat of a lawsuit, the patient's care isn't acute or even medically necessary. I would inform her that you are not able to provide care for her. No need to say, "go ahead and sue". Just tell her she'll have to go to someone else who might agree with her. I do it in plastic surgery all the time."

# posted by ReploglePlasticSurgery : 12:15 AM

Media Research Center Home Page - 8/10/2004 5:38:39 PM

CyberAlert: Exposing Media Bias Daily
Tuesday, August 10 Edition:
• Bush Wrong on Stem Cells, Not Kerry’s False Claims on Cambodia
• ABC: Democratic “Mistake” of Not Playing Up War Service Has Hurt
• Al Hunt Rages: John O’Neill, “a Liar” and “Pawn of Chuck Colson”
• Hume: Kerry Admits “Unable to Think” for 40 Minutes on 9/11
Main site provides links to individual articles. TA -- Main Page:
'Is the WHO Becoming the World 'Harm' Organization?' -

"The acronym 'WHO' stands for the World Health Organization. With its recent track record, however, the Geneva-based global health body is running the risk of becoming the World Harm Organization. If that sounds unduly harsh, consider a series of developments that have badly jeopardized global health.' (Nick Schulz, TCS)"

Overpriced Paternalism:

"---Mr. Edwards' habit of comparing those 'set for life' with those who 'struggle' is equally offensive. His tiresome 'two Americas' theme implies it is somehow easier to earn a high income than a lower one. If true, everyone could easily be as wealthy as Mr. Edwards and John Kerry. In reality, nearly everyone who ends up 'set for life' had to struggle very hard, as Mr. Edwards did, to get to that point. Yet he nonetheless suggests voters should try to get ahead not as he did but by voting for federal handouts: 'When your brother calls and says that he's working all the time at the office and still can't get ahead, you tell him... hope is on the way.' Hope for what? For less time at the office and a big promotion?
Mr. Kerry's speech was more candid, openly peddling help (federal handouts) rather than mere hope (of receiving federal handouts). Most of that marathon talk, however, was devoted to proving himself a hawkish dove -- promising to 'bring our troops home' while nonetheless expanding their force by 40,000 -- armed with 'the newest weapons.'---"

National Center for Policy Analysis

"Many college students graduate without taking core classes in subjects like literature, economics and American history, according to a study from the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA).

ACTA surveyed 50 well-known colleges and universities to find out if they require students to take courses in seven core areas (composition, literature, foreign language, American history, economics, math and natural or physical science). The study found:

None of the 50 colleges require a general course in economics.
Only 14 percent require students to take an American history or government class.
None of the colleges require all 7 subjects; only Baylor University in Texas received an A for covering 6 of the 7 requirements.
Some 48 percent of the schools received a D or F, meaning they require only one or two core classes.
The decline of the core curriculum is partially due to too many choices, says Barry Latzer, the study’s author. Many colleges allow students to pick from dozens of course offerings to fulfill their requirements, even those with very narrow topics, like the “Ghosts, Demons and Monsters” class at Dartmouth College."

Source: “No Math, No Science, No Nothing,” Inside Academe, American Council of Trustees and Alumni, Spring 2004.

For text

For more on Curriculum

National Center for Policy Analysis

Private ownership and rewarding good stewardship are the keys to protecting wildlife, says Terry L. Anderson….

National Center for Policy Analysis

"The U.S. research-based pharmaceutical industry invests far more than government in the development of drugs, spending about $33 billion annually. This is understandable given the uncertainty of the business, says Henry Miller (Hoover Institution):

One out of every 5,000 products screened as a possible drug is approved as a new medicine; the others drop out because of concerns of safety, efficacy or profitability.
About 30 percent of drugs that are approved and marketed produce revenue that recoups research and development costs.
Suggesting that the government should be involved in financing the development of most if not all drugs is pure foolishness, says Miller. Unlike the private sector, government is not driven by cost-effectiveness or the need for profitability. As a result, drug development would be far more costly and inefficient with U.S. taxpayers ultimately footing the bill.

There would also be an inherent conflict of interest in such an arrangement because government agencies would be both the developer and regulator of new drugs, notes Miller."

Source: Henry Miller, “Let’s Not Overinflate Basic Research Role in Developing Drugs,” Investor’s Business Daily, August 5, 2004.

For more on Drug Research and Development

National Center for Policy Analysis
Tuesday, August 10, 2004
"John Kerry’s proposals to raise taxes on the wealthy will do far more harm than good because they will drive up the cost of capital and reduce incentives to produce, says economic policy and political commentator Jack Kemp.

Kemp says rolling back the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans -- those who make more than $200,000 a year, including roughly 70 percent of all small businesses -- indicates a poor understanding of economics:

Lowering the tax rate serves to increase total tax revenues -- not decrease them -- because the wealthy are given incentives to produce more and refrain from sheltering their incomes.

Increasing taxes makes capital more expensive, thus depressing productivity growth, which slows the growth of employment, wages and the size of the economy.

Moreover, the argument for higher taxes on the rich rests on a simplistic assumption that a worker's station in life is fixed. In fact, as the middle class gets richer, they will be driven into higher tax brackets. According to the Urban Institute:

About 25 percent to 40 percent of Americans move from one income quintile to another in a single year.
Over long periods the shifts are larger: approximately 45 percent of workers over 5 years and 60 percent over 15 years will change income quintiles."

Source: Jack Kemp, “Weapons of class warfare,”, August 2, 2004.

For text

For more on Income Taxes

Issues 2004 Whats New:

Volcker: Corruption 'Serious'

"An interim report from Paul Volcker's investigation into improprieties of the U.N.'s handling of the Iraqi Oil for Food program deems the alleged corruption 'serious,' reports China's Xinhua news service. Yes, it's a small step, but this is the strongest word to come from the Volcker investigation to date. A press conference is scheduled for today, and we will provide any new details made available."

Issues 2004 Whats New:

The Protectionist Lie

"Critics of free trade 'have no solutions to offer,' writes Dartmouth College economist Douglas Irwin, only empty rhetoric. Why? 'Even they recognize that trade is not really the problem.'---"

Level with us about real costs of adequate health care:

"---Even without further additions to Medicare/Medicaid programs, the reality is that we are not taking in enough revenue to pay future costs. That means we must face the fact that we will need to raise taxes just to maintain the current system. Or we need to reform the system significantly to provide long-term cost containment.
But that kind of discussion is unlikely to be heard this fall. Instead we'll have a contest of who can promise more benefits -- benefits that we'll be told are affordable. We should keep in mind that these are promises that no one is going to be able to keep."

National Review Online (

"---The Democratic party has many parts and many tendencies, and I should know, having been a Democrat all my life. On point after point, however, I've been breaking with the party, where it seems to me its mainstream spokesmen are out of touch with reality — economic, moral, and cultural. (As Will Rogers said, "I don't belong to any organized political party, I'm a Democrat." Well, that's the way it used to be. Living in Washington, D.C.,I need to be a Democrat to vote in the mayoral primary, our most decisive local election. The national party has become too organized around abortion and too wrong about foreign policy and some domestic policies for me to support it. Reagan and now Bush have taken over the foreign policy idealism/realism I used to hold in common with John and Bobby Kennedy, Scoop Jackson, and others.)

To repeat my main theme: Democrats are confident about a victory this year. Maybe they are right. Still, if, as I anticipate, President Bush wins solidly in 2004, many people will be profoundly unhappy. As one wrote, "First we will vote, then if we lose, we will fight." If such passions win out, it could be ugly."

Telegraph | Opinion | Nuanced? Kerry's story just doesn't add up

"---I'm Vietnammed out. But it's the centrepiece of Kerry's campaign: the other day, asked a straightforward question about 9/11, he stuck to the current millennium for a good 20 seconds and then veered off into "the war that I fought in was a war where we saw America lose its support for the war, where the soldiers came back having had to do what our soldiers are doing today, carry an M-16 in another country, try to tell the difference between friend and foe. I know what it's like to go out at night on patrol", etc, etc. So, since Vietnam seems to be the only subject on which he has anything to say, it would be reassuring to know that at least he's got that right.

For most of his adult life John Kerry has peddled as his central Vietnam anecdote – the one that drove him to turn on his nation's leaders – what appears to be a complete fantasy. Why would he do such a thing? If there's a good answer to that question, maybe someone in his doting press pack would like to ask it."

OpinionJournal - Featured Article
Shame on the Swift Boat Veterans for Bush
John Kerry saved my life. Now his heroism is being questioned.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004 12:01 a.m. EDT
Jim seems to be confused about the name of the Swiftboat organization and the sponsorship. What else may he be confused about? TA

In the Cold War, Kerry Froze:

"---All in all, in his 20 years in the Senate, Kerry ranks as one of the five most dovish or liberal members on foreign policy if you tally up the key votes selected by the liberal advocacy group, Americans for Democratic Action. Is it any wonder that Kerry is seeking to focus voters' attention on his courage as a Navy officer rather than his judgment as a political leader?---"

Bruce Bartlett: The grass is not greener

"---A new report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the United States with real gross domestic product per person in 2003 of $34,960 (in 1999 dollars). This is well above every European country. The most productive European country, Norway, has a per capita GDP of just $30,882 (converted using purchasing power parity exchange rates). The major countries of Europe are even further behind: United Kingdom ($26,039), France ($25,578), Italy ($24,894) and Germany ($24,813).

In other words, Europeans produce no more per year than Americans did 20 years ago. And they are not catching up. According to the Bank for International Settlements in Switzerland, the productivity gap between the United States and Europe is actually widening. In the Euro area as a whole, workers were 86 percent as productive as American workers in 1995. In 2003, this fell to 84 percent.---

"In short, Europeans don't work because it just doesn't pay to work after the government takes its cut. And because welfare benefits are so high, the cost of not working is low. Thus, when workers compare what they make after-tax with what they can make by doing nothing, the gap is very small."

Mike S. Adams: The thought police police II

"---This enlightened love-speaking liberal informed me that it would be different if the people conducting the bake sales really wished to open a debate on affirmative action. But since they were all merely a) greedy people who only wanted to keep what was theirs and b) misled by Fox News (which she said wasn’t really news at all), students really don’t have a right to use the bake sale parody to mock affirmative action on a public university campus.

After her public display of willful constitutional ignorance (heard by everyone in Walden Books), I asked her the $64,000 question: what do you do for a living?

You probably guessed the answer. She is a professor in the UNC system.---"

Dennis Prager: On criticizing a 12-year-old girl

"---Having said that, however, why should a 12-year-old girl be immune from adult criticism? Because of her age? This objection is staggering in its inversion of traditional wisdom, which held that it is 12-year-olds who generally need to hold their tongues before they criticize, let alone ridicule, an adult; and that it is adults' role to criticize the young so as to make them responsible adults. Unlike those liberals who take great pride in a 12-year-old publicly mocking the vice president of the United States, I would be ashamed of a 12-year-old conservative who publicly ridiculed a Democratic vice president.

Furthermore, note the double standard invoked here. A 12-year-old girl should be invited to speak at a national political convention and be taken seriously when she speaks -- but criticizing her is out of bounds because she is 12! This line of thinking reinforced my contention that the Democrats hid behind a 12-year-old girl because they did not have the courage to attack Vice President Cheney themselves.---"

David Limbaugh: 'Unfit For Command' - - Unfit For Discussion?

"---If the stunning allegations in "Unfit for Command" are true, they paint a picture of a man who simply cannot be trusted to be president, much less a wartime president. So what we ought to be focused on is whether they are true.

Concerning the veracity of the charges, consider that the "Swiftees" are not GOP mouthpieces -- some are Democrats. They approached Regnery Publishing with their book proposal, not the other way around. Their account is based on their firsthand knowledge -- not hearsay -- and would be admissible in any court proceeding involving these issues.---

"The Swiftees' brief against John Kerry, if true, is the opposite of dirty campaigning, because we cannot overstate its relevance to his fitness for commander in chief.

Conversely, if you want to witness a seminar in dirty campaigning, just watch as the DNC goes into action trying to suppress the story and smear those who repeat it -- anything but an airing of the merits of the charges. It's going to be ugly."

Star Parker: Dividing in hopes of conquering

"---According to Edwards' portrait, all the dynamism is gone from America. Under George Bush, the die has been cast. There is the fat cat America that controls everything. The fat cats get all the tax breaks, their families and children are set for life, and they buy off the politicians in Washington whenever they need anything. And there is victimized America. They pay all the taxes, struggle every day to feed their children, and are ignored by Washington.

There is, as an aside, one obvious question that is hard not to ask. Sen. John Kerry's wealth is estimated at around a half billion dollars. Estimates of Edwards' wealth are around $50 million. To which America do they belong?---

"It appears that the Kerry/Edwards idea of one America is an America that they design and control. Their campaign is about convincing Americans to elect them and to give them the power to do it. They'll decide who should earn what, where companies should do business, what size fits all health care systems, and what education should be.---"

Gary Aldrich: Former FBI Agent Warns Swift Boat Vets

"---So, my warning to the Swift Boat Vets is this: When you take on the establishment, be prepared to suffer serious assaults to your reputation, at least in the short run. Over time, you will be proven to be honest, as well as brave. Eventually, your reputations will be mostly restored, but nothing will ever be the same for you again. The mainstream media will work diligently to alter the population’s perception of you in ways that you could not possibly imagine.

They will demonize, and then marginalize you so that your impact on this coming election will be minimal.---

"I believe Kerry will lose in a landslide, just like George McGovern in 1972. I believe the reason he will lose is, in part, because you had the courage to step forward and tell the American people the truth. The people will get the truth – they always do.---" Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze

"---Never has the left-wing bias of the media been more blatant. Make a charge about George Bush's service in the Texas Air National Guard and the media immediately demands details and investigations. Make a charge about John Kerry's service in Vietnam and the media reacts with horror and demands investigations ... of the people who asked the questions about Kerry's service." Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze:

"The Democratic National Committee is running television ads which state that President Bush's policies favor corporations that move their headquarters overseas. Now on the surface this charge seems pretty serious ... but it's a charge that only works with the uninformed. That's no surprise. Democrats know that the less a voter actually knows about the issues, the more likely that voter is to vote Democratic. The Democratic Party is the party of ignorance.---" Nealz Nuze Today's Nuze:

"---yesterday, while campaigning in Pennsylvania, Mrs. Bush decided to defend her husband's policy on not federally funding certain lines of stem cell research. By the way, President Bush has not banned any stem cell research, ever. Just so you know.

Anyway, she correctly called 'ridiculous' the idea that her husband was banning stem cell research 'one of the myths that start during a campaign.' She also pointed out that embryonic stem cell research was very preliminary, and is nowhere near yielding any cures. Then she said The Poodle was was trying to make a political issue out of it without saying what's right, and she said 'I imagine he knows better.'

Well, you would have thought that Laura Bush had joined the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, because the media came unglued, and in headlines accused Laura Bush of bashing John Kerry. That's right, simply stating the facts about an issue with which the liberal candidate disagrees is bashing.---"