Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Random Thoughts

Florida and Michigan

Do Democrats believe that the people of Florida and Michigan are adults who are entitled to make adult decisions and stand by the results or do they believe that the citizens of those states are incapable of making their own choices and must be protected from themselves?

Both of the major political parties told the people of Florida and Michigan that they did not wish for those states to reschedule their presidential primary votes to earlier dates. The citizens of those two states made informed decisions in full awareness of the penalty they would have to pay in exchange for the added media attention which would be given to them with their earlier primary dates.

To step in ex post facto and erase the consequences of their actions implies that Floridians and Michiganders are children rather than adults. It implies that they were not acting in a responsible manner and that they had no right to make the tradeoff of having delegates seated at the convention for having their states become major players in the media coverage of the campaign.

It should come as no surprise that the Democrats are trying to figure out a way to let Florida and Michigan have their cake and eat it too. We are, after all, talking about the party which infantalizes its constituencies in order to keep them aggrieved and dependant.

Tuskegee Syphilis Study

Defenders of Jeremiah Wright always point to the Tuskegee Syphilis Study (or as it was officially known, Tuskegee Study of Untreated Syphilis in the Negro Male). We are told that if the government would deliberately infect black men with syphilis in order to study the progress of the disease that it is not a large leap at all to imagine the government creating the AIDS virus in a lab in order to infect black people.

It should be noted that in the Tuskegee Experiment, as it is popularly known, no one was "infected" with syphilis by the government. In 1932 399 black men, mostly illiterate sharecroppers, who already had syphilis were recruited for the study whose original (and somewhat defensible) goal was to determine if men would be better off left untreated rather than be subjected to the toxic and often ineffective treatments which were all that was available for syphilis before the discovery of penicillin.

While the goal of the study was defensible the methodology was unethical and unforgivably cruel. The men were not told that they had syphilis and were never given the chance to give their informed consent. Instead they were told that they were suffering from "bad blood" and were offered free medical treatment, rides to the doctor's office and free burial insurance in case they died before the study was complete.

In 1947 when penicillin was made available and became the standard treatment for syphilis the drug and any information about the drug was withheld from the test subjects and the focus of the study was changed to the observation of how the disease progressed if left untreated.

The details about the study were leaked to the press in 1972 and a firestorm was ignited. The government wound up paying 9 million dollars to the surviving subjects and the families of those who had died in order to settle a class action lawsuit.

We should remember that the study was conceived and administered by physicians with the United States Public Health Service not by congress or any other elected official. The kind of thinking which produced the Tuskegee Study was not that of conservative Southern segregationists but was the intellectual heir to the Progressive Movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The same kind of thinking that gave us Tuskegee also gave us eugenics in all of its malignant glory, including the involuntary sterilization of persons thought to be "inferior" and the first push for legalized abortion - again to rid the nation of those thought to be inferior.

The exact same kind of thinking survives in the medical community today in those who believe in euthanasia and who support embryonic stem cell research. In other words the political party of Mr. Wright's parishioner Barack Obama is where you will today find the kind of people who committed the moral crime knows as the Tuskegee Experiment.

And before we leave the subject we should also remember that the very shock, horror and outrage which gripped the white community upon the disclosure of the Study belies the idea that Tuskegee was simply the normal way in which blacks were treated.

Jeremiah Wright

While on the topic of the controversial pastor I have a question.

By now everyone has seen the pictures of the million dollar mansion which Wright's church is building for Mr. Wright to enjoy in his retirement. Doesn't anybody in the congregation of that church find it monstrously hypocritical of Mr. Wright, who harangued his congregation to avoid "Middle Classness" by not seeking to better one's self financially and move out of the ghetto, that he is moving into a palace built with the widow's mites of his Southside congregation?

Given the recent revelation that Wright moved in on the wife of a parishioner when he was supposed to be counseling them in order to save their marriage and wound up marrying her himself we are led to wonder if perhaps the church bought him that mansion just to get rid of him.

Global Warming

Climate scientists tell us that the earth is entering a period of global cooling due to natural trends in the oceans. These same scientists tell us that the warming should resume around 2015 or a little later. Scientists who study the sun, which is the real driver of climate change on earth, tell us that the sun is entering a phase which will give us another "Little Ice Age" like the one which struck in medieval times.

It is likely that the idea of the "temporary break" in warming is simply the scientists' (who are dependant upon grant money which only comes if they toe the global warming party line) way of pushing the day of reckoning when the whole global warming house of cards comes tumbling down around them back a few more years.

I have said that the left will not give up on global warming until a new hobgoblin can be found to frighten the mob into surrendering their money and their freedom. No new hobgoblin has shown its head to date so human-caused global warming must be salvaged, no matter what the eventual cost in scientific credibility.


Although it is too soon to say for sure there are indications that the environmental wackos may be getting ready to throw ethanol under the bus. The fact that turning food into motor fuel is only making things worse (and starving poor people to death in the bargain) has become impossible to hide any longer. In order to forestall people beginning to look into what other things the green lobby might be lying about the eco-nazis may cut the corn farmers lose.

John McCain

I heard Sean Hannity talking to Newt Gingrich on the radio today. It seems that McCain has once again flip-flopped on his position on amnesty. He is reported to have said that immigration reform cannot be done piecemeal and that a comprehensive immigration reform bill is needed. This contradicts what he told Hannity point-blank, that he "got it" that the public would not accept any reform until after the borders were secure.

Gingrich said that if this were true that McCain need not even bother to campaign because his defeat is certain.

What this, if true, means is that McCain believes that he has the election sewed up without conservative support.


I had business at the Sullivan Co. courthouse in Bristol, TN (home of the NASCAR speedway) yesterday and observed that they have begun to require everyone entering the area of the courtrooms and court offices to submit to search and walk through a metal detector. Sullivan is one of the last counties I have to work in to force the public to endure this inconvenience.

It is judges who order these stepped up security measures at courthouses because they fear that some angry member of the public will walk into their courtroom and shoot them.

Let me close this entry by making a humble suggestion to the jurists among us.

You are not King Solomon, you are not paid to be King Solomon. You, for the most part, do not even look Jewish. What you are is a lawyer who is hired to act as a referee between two other lawyers. You then apply a penalty upon a guilty verdict. You do this by following guidelines laid down by the legislature and precedents set by other judges.

There is nothing about your job which requires you to be creative, wise or even particularly bright so stop acting as if you are the living embodiment of the majesty of the law. That black robe you wear was patterned after the robes worn by ancient pagan priests, however in 21st century America it just looks like something a fashion-challenged homosexual might wear out for a night on the town in San Francisco.

So come down off your high horse, stop doing your job with such insufferable arrogance and fewer people will hate you enough to want to put a bullet into you.

That's all for now.