Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Fight Back with Poetry

The Herald has yet another article on the threat of rape on campus.

A employee of Sindecuse Health Center offers this imperative.

"Everyone has to step up against sexual assault and rape together and fight against it."
How specifically are people planning to fight back?

One subcommittee has programming developed by FIRE designed to prevent rape with the help of students and WMU faculty and workers.

An example of this is "Artist Against Rape" that will be taking place for the first time in February. This program will promote all types of art such as poetry, drawings, paintings, and more that fight to prevent rape and sexual assault. The second subcommittee is advocacy groups that promote an environment and society that do not tolerate sexual assault, rape or rapists.


Another committee organized through FIRE is Take Back The Night. This march occurs in April, which is sexual awareness month. This protest fights against violence toward women and raises awareness about the issue. Public speakers are presented and men and women march against sexual assault and rape.
Yet despite all the speakers, drawings, paintings, and poetry, there is still rape on campus. How is that even possible?

Here's a clue for Western: It's a lot easier to 'fight back' if you have a gun.

It's high time to take back the night with guns.

Margaret O'Brien for Portage City Council

November 6 is election day in Michigan. Voters in Portage should reelect Margaret O'Brien to the Portage City Council.

O'Brien was first elected in 2003 and has performed her job well. She is a staunch conservative who has fought for fiscal responsibility in Portage.

One major issue that she has been involved with is special assessments. These charge homeowners for work on the roads that they live on. This might make sense on purely residential streets, but it made no sense on Oakland Drive, a major thoroughfare. This was a major controversy, with homeowners between Milham and Romence posting homemade signs in their yards saying how much the special assessment would cost. Eventually, the Council put a measure on the ballot to end special assessments, and it was passed by voters.

Voters can visit Margaret O'Brien's campaign website.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007



You should be a conservative because conservatism is the most effective and most moral political philosophy. What do conservatives believe?

Conservatives believe that the legitimate purpose of government is to protect the rights to life, liberty, and property, which are given to us by God. Government does not exist to impose some elitist’s vision of the perfect society on everyone.

Conservatives recognize that the greatest threat to humanity is tyrannical government. In the past century alone, about 180 million people were murdered by governments—outside of war. That’s more than war, homicide, suicide, poverty, or AIDS. The only way to stop this is to strictly limit government power.

The US Constitution sets forth strict limits on what the federal government can do. It limits spending to just a few activities. These limits must be obeyed—even if it is unpopular.

The right to keep and bear arms is the last line of defense against tyranny and must be protected. Genocide can only happen when average people are disarmed. Further, gun ownership reduces crime, as guns are used to stop crimes about 2.5 million times per year.

Any world government would almost certainly be tyrannical. Therefore, we must resist any loss of our national sovereignty and withdraw from the United Nations.

We are threatened by terrorists and others from abroad who seek to do us harm. We must have a strong military to defend ourselves against attack. Our foreign policy must be in our interest, and no one else’s.

Conservatives are capitalists. Mountains of evidence show that a free market economic system is best at producing things that people want and raising the standard of living for both rich and poor alike. But more than that, capitalism is the only moral economic system. This is because it consists of voluntary exchange, while all other systems rely on coercion. But government coercion can only be enforced at the point of a gun. It is immoral for the government to take from one person and give to another. Theft is wrong, even when the government does it.

Conservatives recognize the importance of traditional American culture. Cultures are not all equal. Our Founding Fathers recognized that our nation was founded with a traditional Judeo-Christian culture and that freedom could not survive without it. Without the courage and self-sacrifice necessary to resist the growth of government, liberty would soon be lost.

A civilization needs faith to be healthy and growing. Without faith, it begins to die. This is reflected in a drop in birthrates, as people choose self-indulgence over reproduction. Protecting life is crucial to the survival of a nation. Conservatives believe in protecting life from conception to natural death.

Marriage of one man and one woman is the natural building block of society. It should not be weakened by rampant divorce or redefined based on radical, untested social theories. Traditional marriage is the natural and best way of producing and raising children.

We believe that some immigration is desirable, but that immigrants must adopt American culture. Out of control immigration threatens to destroy our national unity, undermine our economy, and compromise our national security.

Conservatives are patriots. We love our culture, our country, and our civilization. We are not ashamed of our heroes or our holidays. We will defend God, the Ten Commandments, the flag, and other traditional symbols of our culture against attack.

If this sounds like you, or you’d like to know more, why not come to a meeting of the College Republicans? We meet every Wednesday at 9 PM on the second floor of the Bernhard Center, in the Brown and Gold room. (Look for a sign.)



Current periodicals are located on the lower level next to the food area.
The New American [AP2 .O47322x]
Human Events [D410.H8]
National Review [AP2 .N3545]
The Weekly Standard [E839.5.W44]
The American Spectator [AP2.A33x]
Commentary [DS101.C63]


Won by Love: Norma McCorvey, Jane Roe of Roe v. Wade, Speaks out for the Unborn as She Shares Her New Conviction for Life by Norma McCorvey [BR1725.M3564 A3 1997]

Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis [BT77 .L348 1997]
What's So Great About Christianity by Dinesh D'Souza [BT60 .D76 2007]

Civil Rights
Civil Rights: Rhetoric or Reality by Thomas Sowell [JC599.U5 S599 1984]

Witness by Whittaker Chambers (1952) [E743.5.C47]
Treason: Liberal Treachery from the Cold War to the War on Terrorism by Ann Coulter [E743.C68 2003]
The Naked Communist by W. Cleon Skousen [HX56 .S5 1961]
Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight Against America’s Enemies by M. Stanton Evans [E748.M143 E83 2007]
Fidel: Hollywood’s Favorite Tyrant by Humberto Fontova [F1788.22.C3 F66x 2005]
None Dare Call it Treason by John Stormer (1964) [E743.5.S8]
Radical Son: A Journey Through Our Times by David Horowitz [E840.8.H67 A3 1997]

Conservatives Betrayed: How George W. Bush and Other Big Government Republicans Hijacked the Conservative Cause by Richard A. Viguerie [JC573.2.U6 V533 2006]
Phyllis Schlafly and Grassroots Conservatism by Donald Crictlow [JC573.2.U6 C75 2005]

Conservative Classics
Second Treatise of Government by John Locke [JC153.L85 1982]
Reflections on the Revolution in France by Edmund Burke [DC150.B852 1968]
The Federalist by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay [JK154 1961a]
Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville [JK216.T713 2004]

Culture War
Death of the West: How Dying Populations and Immigrant Invasions Imperil Our Country and Our Civilization by Pat Buchanan [CB245.B83 2002]
Persecution: How Liberals are Waging War Against Christianity by David Limbaugh [BV741.L54 2003]
Black Rednecks and White Liberals by Thomas Sowell [HM1096.S683 2005]

Basic Economics: A Citizen’s Guide to the Economy by Thomas Sowell [HB171.S73 2000]
Applied Economics: Thinking Beyond Stage One by Thomas Sowell [HB74.P65 S66 2004]
Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlitt [HB171.H47]

Inside American Education: The Decline, the Deception, the Dogmas by Thomas Sowell [LA210 .S65 1993] (education library in Sangren Hall)
The Worm in the Apple: How Teacher Unions are Destroying American Education by Peter Brimelow [LB2844.53.U6 B75 2003] (education library in Sangren Hall)

Feminist Fantasies by Phyllis Schlafly [HQ1150.S44x 2003]

The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien [PR6039.O32 L6 2001]
The Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis [Fic Lew 2000]
Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky [PG3325.P7 1985]
1984 by George Orwell [PR6029.R8 N49 1992]
Animal Farm by George Orwell [PR6029.R8 A77 1996]
That Hideous Strength by CS Lewis [PR 6023 .E926 T47x 1979]
Lord of the Flies by William Golding [PR6013.O35 L6x]
The Bear and the Dragon by Tom Clancy [PS3553.L245 B42 2000b]
The Last Jihad by Joel Rosenberg [PS3568.O786 L37 2002]

The Naked Capitalist: A Review and Commentary on Dr. Carroll Quigley’s Book: Tragedy and Hope, a History of the World in our Time by W. Cleon Skousen [D421 .S56x]
The Great Deception: A Secret History of the European Union by Christopher Booker and Richard North [JN15 .B6393 2005]

The Federalist by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay [JK154 1961a]
Death by Government by R. J. Rummel [HV6322.7 R86 1994]
The Road to Serfdom by F. A. Hayek (1944) [HD82.H38 1944a]
Men in Black: How the Supreme Court is Destroying America by Mark Levin [KF8775.Z9 L48 2005]

Gun Rights
The Seven Myths of Gun Control by Richard Poe: Reclaiming the Truth about Guns, Crime and the Second Amendment [HV7436.P64 2001]
A Well Regulated Militia: The Battle Over Gun Control by William Weir [HV7436.W45 1997]
More Guns, Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun-control Laws by John Lott [KF3941.L68 1998]
Point Blank: Guns and Violence in America by Gary Kleck [HN90.V5 K56 1991]
The Samurai, the Mountie, and the Cowboy: Should America Adopt the Gun Controls of Other Democracies? by David Kopel [HV7435 .K66 1992]

The Politically Incorrect Guide to American History by Thomas Woods [E179.W83 2004]
33 questions about American history you're not supposed to ask by Thomas Woods [E179 .W828 2007]
Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight Against America’s Enemies by M. Stanton Evans [E748.M143 E83 2007]
The Real Lincoln: A New Look at Abraham Lincoln, his Agenda, and an Unnecessary War by Thomas DiLorenzo [E456.D55 2002]
Treason: Liberal Treachery from the Cold War to the War on Terrorism by Ann Coulter [E743.C68 2003]
Wilson's War: How Woodrow Wilson's Great Blunder Led to Hitler, Lenin, Stalin, and World War II by Jim Powell [E768 .P75 2005]

State of Emergency: The Third World Invasion and Conquest of America by Pat Buchanan [JV6483 .B83 2006]
Alien Nation: Common Sense about America’s Immigration Disaster by Peter Brimelow [JV6493 .B78 1995]
Death of the West: How Dying Populations and Immigrant Invasions Imperil Our Country and Our Civilization by Pat Buchanan [CB245.B83 2002]
Invasion: How America Still Welcomes Terrorists, Criminals, and Other Foreign Menaces to Our Shores by Michelle Malkin [JV6483.M29 2002]

Islam Unveiled by Robert Spencer [BT1170.S65 2002]
The Truth about Muhammad: Founder of the World’s Most Intolerant Religion by Robert Spencer [BT1170 .S657 2006]

Treason: Liberal Treachery from the Cold War to the War on Terrorism by Ann Coulter [E743.C68 2003]
Slander: Liberal Lies About the American Right by Ann Coulter [JC574.2.U6 C68 2002]
Godless: The Church of Liberalism by Ann Coulter [JC574.2.U6 C667 2006b]
How to Talk to a Liberal (If You Must): The World According to Ann Coulter by Ann Coulter [JC574.2.U6 C67 2004]
Intellectual Morons: How Ideology Makes Smart People Fall for Stupid Ideas by Dan Flynn [HM641.F59 2004]
Why the Left Hates America: Exposing the Lies That Have Obscured Our Nation’s Greatness by Dan Flynn [E169.12.F67 2002]
The Savage Nation: Saving America from the Liberal Assault on Our Borders, Language and Culture by Michael Savage [JC574.2.U6 S28 2002]
Vision of the Anointed: Self-congratulation as a Basis for Social Policy by Thomas Sowell [HN90.E4 S67 1995]
The Quest for Cosmic Justice by Thomas Sowell [HM671 .S68 1999]
Suicide of the West: An Essay on the Meaning and Destiny of Liberalism by James Burnham [JK271 .B728]
Deliver Us from Evil: Defeating Terrorism, Despotism, and Liberalism by Sean Hannity [E903.H36 2004]
Shut Up and Sing: How Elites from Hollywood, Politics, and the UN are Subverting America by Laura Ingraham [HN90.E4 I54 2003]

Multiple Topics
More Liberty Means Less Government: Our Founders Knew This Well by Walter Williams [JC599.U5 W55 1999]
Where the Right Went Wrong: How Neoconservatives Subverted the Reagan Revolution and Hijacked the Bush Presidency by Pat Buchanan [JK275.B83 2004]
Let Freedom Ring: Winning the War of Liberty over Liberalism by Sean Hannity [E169.12.H363 2002]

Political Philosophy
A Conflict of Visions by Thomas Sowell [HM73.S68 1987]

The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science by Tom Bethell [Q127.U5 B48 2005]
Darwin on Trial by Phillip Johnson [QH366.2.J65 1991]

The Fair Tax Book by Neal Boortz and John Linder [HJ4652.B65 2005]

Western Civilization
The Victory of Reason: How Christianity Led to Freedom, Capitalism, and Western Success by Rodney Stark [BR115.C5 S63 2005]
How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization by Thomas Woods [BX1795.C85 W66 2005]
The Politically Incorrect Guide to English and American Literature by Elizabeth Kantor [PR83 .K36 2006]

Saturday, October 27, 2007

POLITICAL UPDATE--Law of the Sea Treaty

This update focuses on the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST). LOST would give the United Nations significant control over the oceans. It would have the ability to tax and to restrict naval activity. LOST is expected to appear before the Senate soon.

Cliff Kincaid: Senate Republicans May Sink Bush's U.N. Treaty
Christopher Horner: Law of the Sea Meets 'Legacy Time'
Oliver North: Permission Slip for the Sea
Pat Buchanan: George W. Bush, Globalist
Bill Clark and Ed Meese: Another U.N. Power Grab
WorldNetDaily: U.N. Law of Sea Treaty on Senate fast-track
Cliff Kincaid: Build More Ships or Hire More Lawyers?
Bill Stiegerwald: Why LOST Should Be Stopped -- An Interview
Phyllis Schlafly: Sink The Law Of The Sea Again
Cliff Kincaid: Conservatives Mobilize Against Law of the Sea Treaty

More information: Eagle Forum America's Survival

Questioning History

Following up his bestselling Politically Incorrect Guide to American History, historian Thomas Woods has written a follow-up book--33 Questions About American History that You're not Supposed to Ask.

As in his previous book, Woods tells the truth about the parts of history that have been distorted--often due to ideology, though sometimes by accident. Woods presents a paleolibertarian view of history designed to appeal to conservatives.

The book is arranged in 33 questions. They are not in chronological or other order. About a third of the questions deal with the Constitution or the beliefs of the Founding Fathers. Other topics covered are American Indians, the Wild West, the New Deal, labor unions, civil rights, and the war in Kosovo.

A short version of the first question on the views of the Founding Fathers on immigration can be found at Human Events.

Woods is also author of the book How the Catholic Church Built Western Civilization. His work is well worth reading.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Kalamazoo City Commission Forum

On Tuesday, a forum was held at Western for candidates for the Kalamazoo City Commission. Thirteen candidates attended--the eleven who will be on the ballot, plus two homeless candidates running as write-ins.

The Western Herald and Kalamazoo Gazette provide excerpts of the candidates' statements.

The forum began with a question that was asked to all the candidates. The question was what they will do about Western's budget situation. This wasn't a very good question, because the city commission has no control over Western's funding. All of the candidates basically said that they would lobby the state legislature.

Next, the moderator asked different questions to each candidate. Several specific statements stood out.

Don Cooney attacked the Iraq war, even though the question that he was asked was about the city budget. This was clearly pandering to the audience. He did the same thing at a forum two years ago.

Aaron Davis said that the police department is not protecting Kalamazoo and suggested cutting its budget in half.

Angela Jackson endorsed Detroit's policy against "profiling" based on a number of factors including immigration status. This is a sanctuary city policy. Policies like this protected Mohammed Atta and many illegal alien criminals from arrest and deportation.

Jonathan Braun, one of the homeless candidates, could at least put a few sentences together. Angie Suarez, the other homeless candidate, completely blanked on two of the questions before saying that she didn't know anything about them.

Mayor Hannah McKinney and Commissioner Barb Miller are the best choices for conservatives. The other current commissioners, while liberal, at least know what they are doing. The same cannot be said of many of the challengers.

Taking a STAND

A major cause celebre of liberals these days is genocide in Darfur. This includes the local student group Students Taking Action Now Darfur (STAND).

To be sure, the genocide in Darfur is both real and serious. The Arab Muslim government of Sudan launched a campaign against the black Muslims in the western part of Sudan. About 400,000 people have been killed.

Still, this movement raises questions. The government of Sudan didn't just recently start killing people. About two million people were killed in a war between the Sudanese government and rebels in the south of Sudan. This war lasted through most of the eighties and nineties. A few years ago, a peace agreement limited the violence.

This war featured genocide by the Sudanese government. Yet almost the only people who paid any attention to the issue were conservative Christians. Could this be because the victims of the genocide were predominantly black Christians, not Muslims as in Darfur?

Another question is what exactly STAND advocates. All decent people oppose what Sudan's government is doing. But what should be done about it? Activists have talked about "raising awareness". But what will this accomplish? Will it stop the genocide?

Others have advocated military intervention, whether by America or the United Nations. This is ironic since many of the same people are bitter opponents of the war in Iraq. What reason do they have to think that the same thing is happening in Iraq won't happen in Sudan? Their good intentions?

Would intervening in Darfur be in the interests of the United States? Does this question matter to the activists?

Probably the most effective means of intervention would be something that none of the activists have proposed. Specifically, give the Darfuris guns. Then they will be able to defend themselves. Genocide is only possible when the populace is disarmed.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

The Nightmare Returns

UPDATE: Hooray! The DREAM Act failed to achieve cloture 52-44.

UPDATE: The vote is apparently scheduled for Wednesday.

Reports indicate that the DREAM Act will be considered soon by the Senate.

The DREAM Act would give amnesty to millions of illegal aliens and give in-state college tuition to illegal aliens (but not legal aliens).

Phyllis Schlafly eloquently summarizes the perversity of this bill.

Previous: The Amnesty DREAM

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Great Moments in Crime

Police charge three female students for sign stealing

Kalafut said the stealing began July 24, when the women attended a party and stole several letters from the sign that corresponded to the letters of their first and last names. The police were able to configure the women's names from the letters that were stolen. They were then tracked on, where pictures were found of the girls holding the stolen letters.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Hooray for Bobby!

Yesterday Louisiana elected Republican Bobby Jindal governor.

Jindal is exceptional in many ways. He is Indian-American, a child of immigrants. He is only 36, having been Louisiana's Secretary of Health and Human Services at 24 and president of the state university system at 28. He narrowly lost a race for governor four years ago, but was elected to Congress a year later. He won a convincing victory with 54% of the vote in a twelve candidate race.

Most importantly, he is an exceptional leader who ran on a platform of reform in a state with a long history of political corruption. He plans to push ethics measures in the Louisiana legislature. Jindal succeeds Democratic Governor Kathleen Blanco, who was shown to be incompetent in the disaster of Hurricane Katrina.

Jindal has overcome the bigoted attacks of the Democrats. Four years ago, they darkened his skin in a picture and inveighed that voters must "wake up" before it was "too late". This year, the state democratic party distorted Jindal's religious writings to claim that he hates Protestants. (Jindal is Catholic.) This attack backfired.

Republicans won at least four of seven statewide races, with two more headed to runoffs. They also made gains in the state legislature.

Thus even in a bad political climate, Republican victories are possible. Republicans running in 2008 should learn from Jindal's example. Jindal ran against corruption and advocated reform. He didn't shy away from conservative positions on abortion, guns, and immigration, either.

Last week, Republican Jim Ogonowski received 45% of the vote, the most of any Republican congressional candidate in Massachusetts in a decade, in a heavily democratic district. He ran on a similar anti-establishment message. Democrats in Louisiana and nationwide are vulnerable to the right message.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

POLITICAL UPDATE--North American Union

This update focuses on North American Union (NAU). Former Mexican President Vicente Fox recently confirmed plans of the leaders of the United States, Canada, and Mexico to create the NAU, along with a regional currency. Plans had centered around the proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA), but now involve the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP). It would evolve into an economic and political union, similar to the creation of the European Union.

The administration recently approved Mexican trucks to travel across America, despite opposition from Congress. Reaction continues to the recent SPP summit in Canada. Plans continue for continental superhighways.

Confirmation of a North American Union plan:
Jerome Corsi: Mexico's Fox openly calls for North American Union
Jerome Corsi: Ex-Mexican prez: 'Amero' on the way
Phyllis Schlafly: Scholars Explain Bush's SPP
William Jasper: Continental Merger

Mexican Trucks:
Michael Howe: Bush officials team with Mexico to defend trucks
Ron Paul: Regulation, Free Trade and Mexican Trucks
Jerome Corsi: Mexican trucks approved for long-haul trips in U.S.

Superhighways, SPP Summit, and more:
Phyllis Schlafly: Self-Government in Peril from the Globalists
William Jasper: Running Roughshod Over U.S. Laws
Jerome Corsi: Congress debate begins on North America Union
Jerome Corsi: 'NAFTA Superhighway stops here,' says Okla. senator
Jerome Corsi: Deal develops Canada's NAFTA Superhighway

Friday, October 19, 2007


The United States Senate is expected to soon consider ratification of the Law of the Sea Treaty (LOST). The name may not sound very interesting, but anyone who values America's freedom, security, and independence should be very concerned about LOST.

What is LOST? Its official name is the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. It is a treaty that would regulate practically everything having to do with the world's oceans. It contains many different provisions.

One section would codify international law regarding navigation on the oceans. This section appears to be relatively uncontroversial, though there does not seem to be any particular need for it. A United Nations treaty offers no more protection for freedom of navigation than the current system.

LOST would place severe restrictions on military activities.

According to the UN, the purpose of LOST is to preserve international waters for “peaceful purposes.” But Articles 19 & 20 of the treaty would proscribe the U.S. Navy from training with weapons, collecting intelligence or interfering with enemy communications in the territorial waters of other states without their expressed permission. Military aircraft are specifically prohibited from taking off and landing in these waters, and severe limitations would be imposed on loading and unloading “any commodity, currency or person” including military equipment. Submarines are required to travel on the surface and “show their flag in territorial waters.” Article 30 states that warships not complying with the laws of a coastal nation can be forced to leave.
Disputes would be subject to decisions by international panels of judges. The United States would not have a veto.

LOST also creates the International Seabed Authority. It would designate the oceans and the resources beneath them to be the "common heritage of mankind". Anyone who wanted to mine these resources would have to pay a tax to the United Nations.

This is a wholesale violation of the right to property as elaborated by John Locke. Unowned resources can be appropriated by anyone. To do so, someone must "mix their labor" with them. That is, they must do the work to collect them. The notion that these resources are owned by "mankind" is a fundamental attack on freedom.

Of course, when the UN says "mankind", it actually means the UN. LOST would for the first time give the UN an independent source of revenue with which to pursue its designs.

Some conservatives see the United Nations as a harmless absurdity. While the UN is far from harmless, its designs have been limited by the fact that it depends on its member nations for revenue. Without this constraint, it will be much more free to pursue military "peacekeeping" activities, socialism, and world government.

LOST was first drafted around thirty years ago. Its primary creator was Marxist world government advocate Elisabeth Borgese. Surprisingly or not, most elites favored the treaty in the early eighties. But President Ronald Reagan totally rejected LOST and refused to sign it. But LOST didn't go away.

In 1994, President Clinton negotiated a side agreement that purported to fix the treaty and signed it. But the side agreement wasn't binding on the actual treaty. Former Reagan officials Ed Meese and Jeane Kirkpatrick have said that Reagan would still oppose the treaty.

Thankfully, Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Jesse Helms refused to consider the treaty. When Helms retired in 2002, the new chairman, Richard Lugar, made a new push to ratify the treaty. But Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist heeded conservative opposition and did not bring it to a vote. Now that Democrats have a Senate majority, LOST is once again on the agenda.

Most, if not all conservatives oppose LOST. This includes organizations such as Eagle Forum, Center for Security Policy, Free Congress Foundation, Heritage Foundation, Cato Institute, and Leadership Institute. It also includes publications such as Human Events, National Review, and the Weekly Standard. Prominent conservatives including Phyllis Schlafly, Pat Buchanan, Oliver North, Paul Weyrich, Morton Blackwell, Cliff Kincaid, Michelle Malkin, and more oppose LOST.

However, the current administration supports LOST and is pushing for ratification.

Conservatives and anyone else who values America's freedom, security, and independence must oppose the Law of the Sea Treaty and prevent its ratification.

POLITICAL UPDATE--Law of the Sea Treaty

More information: Eagle Forum

French Making Progress

In the Gazette:

BATTLE CREEK -- Kalamazoo County Drain Commissioner William French has been moved to the Southwest Regional Rehabilitation Center in Battle Creek as he continues to recover from a stroke, according to a family member.

"He does recognize us and talk to us,'' said Dan French, the drain commissioner's brother. "He does have good use of his right arm. He is able to feed himself.''


"He had a very devastating stroke,'' Dan French said. "Will he be able to return to work, I can't tell your right now.''

Local News

In the Herald and Gazette:


Kalamazoo County starts here.

2. There's trouble brewing in the WSA. You won't find the whole scoop here.

3. Here's a great column on Al Gore's Nobel Prize. Ironically, the IPCC corecipients have said that the worst case senario for rising sea levels is 17 inches, while Gore's movie claims that they will rise 20 feet.

4. A coffee chain is changing its name. One commenter gets it right.

I am origianally from Central America, therefore, latina. I was very saddened and still angry at the fact that once again, race was thrown in this matter. Not once, since I have been a customer of Beaner's did I think of it as disparging. I am tired of the "race" card being used even now.

Get over it. Re-naming Beaner's is not worth the cost. I am sadden that we continue to deal with this issue. When will it end?
5. Students present living wage proposal to board

6. Obituary: Timothy Ryan Hurttgam, WMU student

WMU activist succumbs to cancer

KALAMAZOO -- A 22-year-old Western Michigan University student and campus activist has passed away.

Tim Hurttgam, who had battled cancer for more than two years, died Monday.

Hurttgam was a quiet young man but "very passionate ... just kind of in a nonstop way,'' said friend and WMU student Michael Gregor.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Events on Campus

The Graduate Christian Fellowship sends word of the following events.

Our October faculty/grad event will be a bit different this month. It takes the form of our annual Mars Hill Lecture Series event, which is next Tuesday night at WMU (Room 210 of the Bernhard Center at 7:30 PM) and features a free public lecture by Margaret Killingray, a British author, editor, educator and speaker. She will be speaking on the topic of The Call to Be Counter-Cultural: How should we live?

She and her husband David (who is also speaking earlier in the day next Tuesday at the request of WMU's history department, on some of the black British leaders of England's abolitionist movement, many of whom were devout Christians) have long been associated with John Stott's London Institute of Contemporary Christianity. Both of them have worked hard over the years to integrate the biblical Christian worldview with every aspect of life.
The latter event is on Tuesday, October 16, 2007, at 12:30 p.m. in 2303 Sangren Hall.

Godless Indeed

Liberals are attacking Ann Coulter again. This time, the impetus was a comment Coulter made while promoting her new book If Democrats Had Any Brains, They'd be Republicans. Coulter said she believes that Jews should convert to Christianity. Liberals have vitriolically accused Coulter of being anti-Semitic.

These attacks are either extremely ignorant or extremely anti-Christian. To review some things that everyone should already know, Christians believe that everyone should become a Christian. Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, atheists, everyone. This belief is not exclusive to Coulter. It is fundamental to Christianity.

Christians believe that the only way to achieve salvation is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Wanting someone become a Christian means that you want him to go to heaven. The "anti-Semitic" position for a Christian would be to not want Jews to convert.

Claiming that the essential beliefs of Christianity are vile and "anti-Semitic" is fundamentally anti-Christian.

One local example of this phenomenon is the latest "Quotes and Comments" item in the Herald, where its liberal editors regularly vent their hatred of Christianity.

While Ann Coulter is no stranger to controversy, this is a bit far, even for her. Does she want to perfect Jews by making them Christians or perfect America by ridding the country of Jews? Pick your poison. Both are horrendously anti-Semitic and bring to mind Aryan ideals of society. She may have only meant to tout her own religion, Christianity, as perfect, but it's one thing to idealize your own faith and quite another to call for the perfection of an entire religious group.
Does the author seriously contend that converting to Christianity is equivalent to being murdered? Or course, Coulter was referring to the Jewish religion, not the Jewish ethnicity. There are many ethnically Jewish Christians.

Coutler's previous book Godless: The Church of Liberalism argued that liberalism is a godless anti-Christian religion. Liberals seem intent on proving her right.

Hall of Shame in Review

The big political controversy in the Spring 2007 semester at WMU was the Western Michigan University Faculty Hall of Shame.

This document was compiled by the WMU College Republicans to document the misuse of power for political purposes of faculty members at WMU. It had been on the group's website for some time when someone who read it decided to turn it into a big controversy.

The WMU College Democrats launched a campaign to cover up the abuses committed by some faculty members. They wrote an article for the Western Herald attacking the College Republicans and the Hall of Shame, demanding that it be taken down. They never bothered to contact the College Republicans before publishing their article. Their article was full of errors and misrepresentations. Ironically, the College Democrats did far more to promote the Hall of Shame than the College Republicans ever did, and they have posted it to their website.

The WMU College Republicans issued a response that also appeared in the Herald. The College Democrats never issued a retraction or apology for their article.

The issue continued with an article in the Herald and an absurd editorial in the Herald wildly misrepresenting the Hall of Shame. They posted a poll question allowing students to weigh in on the matter. There were threats to suppress the free speech of the College Republicans through legal action or university policy, but ultimately cooler heads prevailed and no such action was taken.

On their blog, the College Democrats made some very revealing admissions about their efforts.

The President of the College Democrats admitted that he did not know whether the allegations in the Hall of Shame are true:

Did the instructors of these classes misuse their power? We dont know. We’d certainly LIKE to know.
That didn't stop the Democrats from accusing us of "slander" and more. Their President established an interesting standard of proof:

If you can concretely show me that the claims you make in your hall are true, with indisputable documented evidence that teachers were unfair to apposing views, I would be very interested.
So the Democrats demanded "indisputable documented evidence" before faculty can be criticized, but they accuse the College Republicans of slander, etc. while admitting that they don't even know whether this is true! Talk about double standards!

The Democrats' article implied that the Hall of Shame was inaccurate without ever explicitly making that accusation. The author of the Democrats' article made this admission:

Others became obsessed with checking the accuracy of every detail of the Hall, and that missed the larger point. The original point that the College Democrats column made was that people are sick of petty name calling in politics, and that they want a real discussion of the issues.
The Hall of Shame doesn't contain any "name-calling", it contains factual assertions. The author admits that he wants the facts covered up even if they are true. The real purpose of the article was to protect liberal wrongdoing, not promote civility.

Thankfully, they failed.



The Western Michigan University Faculty Hall of Shame is intended to inform WMU students and other interested persons of the misdeeds of faculty members at WMU. The criterion for membership is misuse of power over students for political purposes. This can include criminal acts, assaulting or harassing students, grading students based on political positions or activities, stifling dissenting viewpoints in class, or using class time or assignments for propagandizing for political positions rather than teaching the proper subjects of their courses. Being liberal is neither necessary nor sufficient for membership. Documentation or eyewitness testimony are required for induction.

Dr. Sushi Datta-Sandu
Political Science
Dr. Datta-Sandhu uses her classes for the purpose of propagandizing her students. In Introduction to Political Science, PSCI 105, she has promoted liberalism, abortion, gun control, feminism, and Islam. She forced her students to read a 600-page novel about abortion which argues against parental consent laws. She hosted a forum on Islam in which the only views allowed were pro-Islam. She forced her students to read obscure feminist writings (remember, this was in an introductory class). She promoted the feminist view of women as victims of a patriarchy, but she rejected out of hand the notion that women should be allowed to carry guns to defend themselves. She showed graphic films on the abuses of apartheid, but she never mentioned the much worse atrocities of communist governments. She is intolerant of conservative opinions in her classes.

Dr. Norman Hawker
In 2002, Dr. Hawker offered extra credit to his class for volunteering on a political campaign. However, he only gave contact information to one political campaign, that of Democrat Ed LaForge, who was vying with Republican Tom George for a state senate seat. As one student put it: “This was not an accidental, innocent mistake made by Hawker… Rather, there is evidence that he had clear intentions in mind; intentions that would benefit both the Ed LaForge campaign and Kalamazoo Democrats alike. Hawker not only contributed a generous sum of money to the LaForge campaign, but also made numerous contributions to Democrats across the state ( Even more obvious are his ties to the LaForge campaign, for which [his] wife is treasurer.” (source: Western Herald, October 15, 2002) The clear purpose of such actions was to use his position of power over students to advance a political cause he supported.

Dr. Lawrence Potter
Black Americana Studies

Dr. Potter, the director of Black Americana Studies, is also extremely intolerant of conservative beliefs. The WMU NAACP approached the College Republicans to have a debate about affirmative action. Although presented as balanced, the debate was very one-sided, with both the panels and the audience stacked for the other side. Dr. Potter served as the “mediator,” saying things such as "Well, YOUR President says this...." and "Don't you think that's a little hypocritical..." (source: Western Herald, April 9 2003) Girls from his class threatened one of the debate participants for two years afterward, saying "Dr. Potter taught us to go against girls like white girls!" After that student sent him a polite email about the situation, he accused her of harassment. He filed a complaint with the Student Judicial Council and tried to get her expelled from Western. His complaint was dismissed, and she was found not responsible. To this day, he is spiteful towards her. He is anti-white, opposes personal responsibility, and promotes hate.

In 2004, Dr. Potter was arrested early in the morning in Bronson Park for accosting and soliciting a prostitute. He eventually pleaded no contest to disorderly conduct. (source: Western Herald, January 6, 2005)

Dr. Edith Fisher
Women’s Studies

Dr. Fisher was extremely upset at the fact that Pat Buchanan, an advocate of immigration reform, came to speak at Western on Cesar Chavez Day, the birthday of the late union organizer. She took offense at flyers advertising this event and pointing out this coincidence. She tore down a number of these flyers, claiming that they were illegally posted, despite the fact that dozens of other groups had posted flyers in the same locations, including the Political Science department. She tore down a poster of Buchanan costing $30, crumpled it, and went to her women’s studies class. She then impaled it on a Mexican flag, “symbolically forcing it through Buchanan’s face.” A student got word of this, and several College Republicans went to investigate. They found her waving flyers and screaming. Not realizing that a class was in session, a student went to retrieve the poster. He was assaulted (shoved) by Dr. Fisher. Or, in her version of the story, “I was scared. It felt like my classroom was under siege.” She later filed a compliant against the student. (source: Western Herald, May 23, 2005)

Dr. Allen Carey-Webb
In 1983, a Guatemalan woman named Rigoberta Menchu published I, Rigoberta Menchu, a book which purported to be an autobiography of her life. She describes many brutal atrocities committed by the military government in its long war against the FMLN communist guerrillas. The book became a sensation on the left, was assigned reading at thousands of colleges, and in 1992 Menchu won the Nobel Peace Prize. However, her book was later exposed as a fraud. She made up many specific charges, including the torture of one brother and the death of another who is still alive. (source: Intellectual Morons by Dan Flynn) What is most shocking is what happened next. Many professors continued to teach the book as if nothing had changed. That includes Allen Carey-Webb: “We have a higher standard of truth for poor people like Rigoberta Menchu… If we find a flaw in her, it doesn’t mean her whole argument goes down the drain.” He continued to teach her book, but he did allow criticism from another source. (source: Chronicle of Higher Education, January 15, 1999)

Dr. Richard MacDonald
Dr. MacDonald consistently dismisses any kind of conservative thought, and routinely attacks conservative thinking in his classroom. He also prefers to interpret conservatism in ways that work well with his political agenda and ideology, no matter how incorrect they are. When speaking of the Heritage Foundation, Dr. MacDonald said “when you read some report they have, you should ask yourself ‘what are they going to spin today?’” When speaking of constitutional constructionism, he claimed that what constructionism means for conservatives is that we wish to return to the days when women and African-Americans had no rights, especially when it comes to voting rights. Of course, this is not true. He also claims that ALL poverty in this country is caused by government policies meant to marginalize the poor. Once again, here is an instructor who fails to take into account personal responsibility.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

POLITICAL UPDATE--National Security

This update focuses on national security. The war against Islamic terrorists continues. Russia and China continue to plot against America. America needs a strong national defense.

Don Devine: How To Win War on Terror
Walter Williams: Creating Effective Incentives
Douglas MacKinnon: The Two Things To Know Before Your City is Nuked By Terrorists
David Keene: Conservative Foreign Policy

William Jasper: Behind Islamic Terror
William Jasper: The Real Terror Paymasters
Robert Maginnis: This Isn’t Your Father’s Bear
Robert Maginnis: Chinese "Crackers" Attack Pentagon
Phyllis Schlafly: Americans Need China-Free Food
Pat Buchanan: Is Belgium Breaking Up?

POLITICAL UPDATES are archived here.

Paying for Taxes

Radio advertisements in the Kalamazoo area are promoting the Croyden school, which is run by the Kalamazoo Regional Education Service Agency (KRESA). This school is the beneficiary of a proposed tax increase that will appear on the ballot in November. Voters shot down an almost identical proposal in May.

Until recently, the advertisements touted the school but did not mention the ballot proposal. Now, new advertisements mention the proposal and urge that voters adopt it. The ad says that it was "brought to you by Kalamazoo-RESA".

Was this advertisement paid for with taxpayer money? As far as I know, it is illegal to promote ballot proposals with taxpayer funds.

This issue deserves further investigation.

Tax Increases On the Ballot

Friday, October 12, 2007

Waging War, update

I attended the before-mentioned Living Wage forum between the Board of Trustees, the Living Wage Now group, and other interested parties.

VP Anderson and VP Rinker made a presentation regarding the situation. In this presentation, they indicated that the only employees directly or indirectly employed at WMU that earn below what the Living Wage campaign describes as a "living wage" are those employees under CSM who do custodial work in our residence halls. The wages paid to these employees are not borne by tuition dollars, but entirely by room and board; put another way, the students in the residence halls pay for the CSM services. Any increase in the costs of these services will be placed directly on the backs of the students in the residence halls.

Due to the Western Edge program, which locks in the cost of room and board from freshman year onward for students, any increase in costs will be paid by incoming freshman. Any increases to the living wage and thus increased costs to students will be paid by subsequently new freshman, as the current residence hall renters have their rates fixed.

Costs that may be imposed by a wage increase:

Room and Board costs; The services of CSM are paid for directly by room and board. The increased costs to students in the residence halls would be approxemately $100 per student, per year.
Management costs; WMU will have to monitor the activites of their vendors and also create and continuously update their living wage calculations.
Litigation costs; WMU may take on litigation risk due to agreeing to pay a "living wage," and the potential legal disagreement on what defines a "living wage."
Purchase cost; WMU may take on risk that vendors will not work with us as their wage and compensation information is proprietary. By forcing vendors to disclose to WMU during the bidding process how much they will pay their employees, they will become less competitive. This injures the business we do work with and may discourage other vendors from bidding for our contracts in the future.

These are simply the costs imposed on WMU and WMU students. A higher wage my disqualify some employees with reduced productivity from employment. This is supported by vast evidence indicating that increases to minimum wages creates greater unemployment among low-skilled individuals. Instead of raising costs on some students, WMU may simply employ less workers. One would imagine that any wage is better than none.

When questioned about accepting additional student costs, the Living Wage Now representative indicated that while they would be willing to accept increased costs to implement a living wage, they had no idea if the students who would actually be paying those costs would be willing to pay them. Furthermore, because the costs would be primarily paid by incoming freshmen, it is difficult to see how they could determine this information.

After the presentations by VP Anderson, VP Rinker and the Living Wage Now campaign, the floor was opened to Q&A from Board members and from interested parties. The board had many intelligent questions for both the VPs in attendance and the Living Wage Now representatives. After which, there were comments made by others.

I spoke to the board and thanked the VPs for their dedication to the students of Western. I stressed the recent increases in tuition costs greater than the rate of inflation, the high unemployment in the state, and other financial burdens that Western students face. I illustrated the financial frustrations of students by pointing out the recent rally in Lansing, in which students from Universities across Michigan lobbied legislatures for more funding to ease the burden on students. In times of economic leanness, it is irresponsible for WMU to be placing a greater burden on students for services not related to research or education, the two core functions and purposes of Western Michigan. By raising the costs to students, we are working contrary to our goals of increasing enrollment, creating an environment in our residence halls that breeds retention, promoting the Western Edge, and providing an affordable, world-class education to any qualified student who wishes to be taught at Western Michigan University.

I encourage the VPs and other parties who are members of the purchasing policies of WMU to be mindful to the core stakeholders of the University and realize that there, indeed, is no such thing as a free lunch, and that any increasing costs for services are placed on the shoulders of the students.

While there are many other reasons to not support the Living Wage Now campaign, one is especially troubled by any cost-increasing measure that would be an additional burden on Western students.

Waging War

The Coalition for Higher Tuition is continuing its efforts on behalf of a "living wage".

KALAMAZOO -- A student group calling for custodians in Western Michigan University dorms to earn what students feel is a ``living wage'' will make its case to WMU's board on Friday.

At 9:45 a.m., organizers of WMU Living Wage Campaign will present to the board of trustees its arguments for why the custodians should earn $9.50 an hour with health benefits or $11.50 without such benefits. The hour-long forum will be in the West Ballroom of the Bernhard Center.
The Coalition for Higher Tuition Returns
The Coalition for Higher Tuition

MI-Child or MI-Adult?

Democrats are promoting their changes to the SCHIP program as providing health care to poor kids. But a significant portion of the program's recipients are actually adults. In Michigan, SCHIP is known as MI-Child. Representative Tim Walberg, who courageously cast a tough vote against SCHIP, provides the facts.

In 2006, 118,501 children and 101,919 adults in Michigan received health care from the S-CHIP program. Incredibly, this means that 46 percent of Michigan’s funding allotment intended to give poor children health insurance actually went to cover adults.
The Democrats' changes to SCHIP would provide welfare for families that make up to $82,000. It would also give money to illegal aliens.

Presious: The SCHIP Scam

A Revealing Admission

Former Mexican President Vicente Fox recently made a very revealing admission in an interview with Larry King.


According to a transcript published by CNN, King, near the end of the broadcast, asked Fox a question e-mailed from a listener, a Ms. Gonzalez from Elizabeth, N.J.: "Mr. Fox, I would like to know how you feel about the possibility of having a Latin America united with one currency?"

Fox answered in the affirmative, indicating it was a long-term plan. He admitted he and President Bush had agreed to pursue the Free Trade Agreement of the Americas – a free-trade zone extending throughout the Western Hemisphere, suggesting part of the plan was to institute eventually a regional currency.

"Long term, very long term," he said. "What we proposed together, President Bush and myself, it's ALCA, which is a trade union for all the Americas."

ALCA is the acronym for the Area de Libre Comercio de las Américas, the name of the FTAA in Spanish.

King, evidently startled by Fox's revelation of the currency, asked pointedly, "It's going to be like the euro dollar (sic), you mean?"

"Well, that would be long, long term," Fox repeated.


Fox explained that he and Bush intended to proceed incrementally, establishing FTAA as an economic agreement first and waiting to create an amero-type currency later – a plan he also suggested was in place for NAFTA itself.

"I think the process to go, first step is trading agreement," Fox said. "And then further on, a new vision, like we are trying to do with NAFTA."

Monday, October 08, 2007

Beware of the Owner

Another self-defense story. From WOOD TV:

GRAND RAPIDS -- A well-known local photographer shot an intruder to death early Monday morning when the man broke into the gallery, according to police.

About 12:30 a.m. Monday, people who live in apartments above the photography shop on Division Avenue just north of Cherry Street heard breaking glass and a popping sound, and called 911.

Detectives say a man smashed the front window to get in, waking up the business owner who lives just behind the shop.

Allen Stevenson, 43, of Muskegon Heights confronted the owner, Jeff Dykehouse, who then allegedly shot the intruder. Stevenson was dying on the floor when police arrived on scene and was later pronounced dead at a hospital.

Columbus Day

Here's some reading for Columbus Day.

Columbus Day—A Comanche's Philosophy
A Comanche Looks At Columbus

Saturday, October 06, 2007


This update focuses on Iraq. America is fighting terrorist enemies in Iraq. Neoconservatives promoted the war to spread democracy. They promoted nation-building and equated democracy with freedom. This ideology has hurt the effort to win the war and distracted from other threats. There is some progress in the war effort.

Don Devine: Middle Way Iraq Victory
Thomas Sowell: Mugged By Reality
Thomas Sowell: Mugged By Reality: Part II
Thomas Sowell: Mugged By Reality: Part III
Jed Babbin: Fire the Neocons, Fight the War
Pat Buchanan: The Democracy Worshiper

POLITICAL UPDATES are archived here.

Kalamazoo City Commission Election

The filing deadline has passed for the 2007 Kalamazoo City Commission Election. Eleven candidates are running for seven seats.

In Kalamazoo, all seven seats are up for election every two years. The top seven vote-getters become commissioners. The top vote-getter becomes mayor, the second-place finisher becomes vice-mayor.

In 2005, the top vote-getters in order were Hannah McKinney, Bobby Hopewell, Don Cooney, David Anderson, Mary Balkema, Barb Miller, and Sean McCann. Balkema resigned earlier this year to become Kalamazoo County Treasurer. She was replaced by David Jaurez, who elected commissioner in 2003, finishing seventh, and lost in 2005, finishing eighth. Juarez attacked the WMU College Republicans in 2005 for bringing Pat Buchanan to campus.

All the incumbent commissioners except Juarez are running for reelection. Five others are seeking a seat on the commission. They are Tammy Barnard, Aaron David, Angela Jackson, Stephanie Moore, and Brian Shaff. Moore is running with Cooney as the unofficial Green Party ticket. The politics of the others is unknown at this time.

Two homeless members of the radical Kalamazoo Homeless Action Network (KHAN), Angie Suarez and Jonathan Braun, announced their intention to run for the commission. However, they failed to collect the necessary fifty signatures, which doesn't say much for their leadership abilities.

Most of the current commissioners are probably pretty safe for reelection, though Sean McCann may be in some danger. It isn't immediately clear who of the others is most likely to win.

In this type of election, it may be rational for a voter to vote for fewer than seven candidates. This is because a vote for someone you prefer less could displace someone you prefer more.

The SCHIP Scam

Liberals are hopping mad about President Bush's veto of the changes to the SCHIP program. Or at least that's what they're pretending.

They are crying crocodile tears about the children, the poor children, who won't have health care. But SCHIP already covers poor children. For better or worse, it was created by Republicans. The democrats are trying to expand the program to cover middle class children whose parents make up to $82,000 per year.

Ah, poverty. Trying to scrape by and make ends meet on only $82,000.

Case in point is the Western Herald's Adam Fox, in the typically insipid 'Quotes and Comments' section.

Bush claims he vetoed the bill because it might extend health insurance to some children in middle-class families and not just "poor" children. Holy lordy, lord, lord, I can't even believe I read this; it's just plain angering. Heaven forbid the government provide health care for children who are not "poor." Sen. Kennedy is right on with his statement. I have an idea: let's deny Bush's children health care and see how he likes it. Better yet, let's deny him health care. Approving a bump in children's health insurance spending should have nothing to do with party lines or philosophies - a general sense of morality should prevail. But if there's one thing we've learned over the last seven years, it's that George W. Bush is anything but moral.
So Fox wants President Bush's children to die if they get sick. Remember, liberals are more compassionate than you.

Of course, no one is denying health care to the poor. Where is Fox's compassion for the taxpayer? What has he done to deserve being robbed? Where is Fox's "sense of morality" on that?

Almost exactly two years ago, the WMU College Republicans invited Congressman Tom Tancredo to speak on campus. Fox wrote an article for the Herald severely misrepresenting the speech and the Herald ran an editorial smearing Tancredo. The editorial attacked Tancredo's vote against a bill purporting to provide relief to the victims of Hurricane Katrina.

But as Tancredo explained, the money would be misused and wouldn't go to the people who needed it. The Herald didn't see fit to print Tancredo's explanation. Time proved him right, as much of the money disappeared, was wasted, or was blown by its recipients. But the goal of liberals and congressmen was to act self-righteous and "compassionate", not actually help people.

The SCHIP program would displace children from private health care and charity to inferior government health care. It would hurt many children, not to mention the taxpayers. It is also a giveaway to big business.

But Adam Fox is feeling self-righteous, and that's what counts.

Taxes On the Record

Well, well, well.
LANSING -- Republican state Sen. Tom George, a mild-mannered doctor who often gives upbeat talks on the Senate floor about healthy lifestyles or Michigan history, was uncharacteristically angry when he stood up to talk this week.

The target of his ire was the fact that a Democratic staff member, during a politically sensitive vote giving immediate effect to an expanded sales tax on services, had taken photos of the voting board even though it wasn't a recorded vote.

"It was a serious violation that can only be interpreted one way -- as an attempt to collect information which, when taken out of context, could be used in a political attack on any member of this chamber,'' the Texas Township lawmaker said this week.
The most important vote of the session wasn't a recorded vote?

Then there's this.

Days after voting for a tax increase to avert a state government shutdown, three Republican senators from southwestern Michigan are facing angry reaction from anti-tax activists and are now potential candidates for recall.

But state senators Ron Jelinek, Tom George and Patricia Birkholz also say they're getting a flurry of supportive calls and e-mails, as well as thanks from some fellow Republicans for helping to resolve the months-long budget crisis.

"I've had Republicans from both (the Senate and House) thank me, and these are people who voted 'no''' on the tax bills, said Jelinek, whose district includes Cass and Van Buren counties.


George, Kalamazoo County's senator, says he's getting more positive than negative response, both in terms of calls and e-mails to his office and in the reaction he heard Tuesday while visiting a Senior Expo in Kalamazoo.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Political Quizzes

A few quizzes to test your knowledge and beliefs.

Civic Literacy Report (I got 100%!)

A Quiz About the U.S. Constitution (I got 23 1/6 out of 24.)

Ideology Selector

Libertarian Purity Test (I got 69/160.)

Banned Books Crock

Across America, libraries are promoting "Banned Books Week". This comes complete with lots of blather about free speech and censorship.

But the truth is that none of the books in question have been banned. It would certainly be wrong for the government to prevent people from buying or reading books. But that hasn't happened. The actual issue is what books appear in government (public) libraries.

Government spends taxpayers' money to buy the books that stock library shelves. Librarians choose which books will appear on the library shelves. Librarians also choose which books to remove from the shelves to make room for more books.

Occasionally, someone will complain about the choices that librarians have made. Then, the librarians will gleefully alert whoever runs banned books week, and another book is added to the list. The book in question need not ever even have been removed from a library to be counted as "banned".

To be sure, there are some cranks who complain about classics like Huckleberry Finn because it uses now-offensive language that was common at the time. But that does not mean that no complaints have merit.

Libraries spend taxpayer money. Taxpayers have every right to criticize their choices. This is fundamental to democracy. But the librarians believe that only they should have any say in what appears in libraries. Any criticism is smeared as censorship.

What if other branches of government tried this? Could there be a "banned bridges week" to attack anyone who criticized a road project? How about a "banned borders week" for anyone who criticized immigration enforcement?

The Kalamazoo Public Library is cosponsoring the week with the local chapter of the ACLU. They have sent out a mailing and run radio ads promoting the ACLU. Who paid for this?

The ACLU was created in 1920 by Roger Baldwin with the goal of advancing communism in America. It defended communists and subversives in the name of protecting civil liberties. When communism went out of fashion on the left, the ACLU dropped overt communist ties, but continued its goal of subverting America.

The Kalamazoo Public Libraries are closely tied to the ACLU. The groups have cosponsored several events together.

Promoting reading is a worthy goal, but lying and smearing critics is mendacious.

Monday, October 01, 2007


Well, the shutdown only lasted four hours. Republican Michigander has a good analysis of the deal that was reached last night. Time for recalls?

The government has shut down! Run for the hills!

Actually, it doesn't look like the shutdown will last very long. The state House of Representatives passed a sales tax increase on services and an income tax increase. No Republicans voted for the sales tax, while two (Ward and Gaffney) voted for the income tax.

The state house also passed reforms to MESSA, the insurance provider run by the Michigan Education Association (MEA), the state teachers union. They will allow competitive bidding that will save money and reduce the clout of the MEA.

Jack Hoogendyk has been live-blogging the whole day.

Herald writer defends Ahmadinejad

Today's Western Herald has a disturbing article wrought with fallacies defending Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Here is my response (which I posted as a comment, but who knows if the editors there will take down):

Mr. Schuld,

I expected a more intelligent response from a member of our excellent graduate programs. Your well-sourced rebuttal was wrought with logical fallacies and mis-truths. Allow me to illustrate.

1) Ahmadinejad has sworn destruction of both the United States and Israel on numerous occasions. One such occasion ( he stated, "And God willing, with the force of God behind it, we shall soon experience a world without the United States." This was after making comments that our ally Israel would be "wiped out from the map." Clear enough for you? If not, by all means let me know, because I can produce plenty more examples.

2) Being possibly hypocritical is not equivalent to being incorrect. I'm sure the author is aware of the human rights violations of other countries; however, that is not the topic of the article. Simply because other countries may have less-than-stellar records on this subject does not undo Iran's human rights violations nor does it excuse them. You have failed to produce any counterarguments or excuses to Iran's human rights violations.

3) Last time I checked, "liberal" isn't any registered organization that issues press releases as to its official position. Therefore, I see the accusations of a straw man to be difficult to prove correct or incorrect, due to the lack of an official position on the matter. The author is perfectly capable of communicating her impression of some liberals' opinions of the Iranian President. If you feel this misrepresents liberals, would you care to say why? Is it not believable that some liberals in fact do “[paint] Ahmadinejad as a victim?”

4) Again, you fall back on your crutch of not attacking the position, but attempting to discredit the argument by way of calling "hypocrite!" This is a clever logical fallacy in which you attempt to debate the subject on hand by debating an entirely different subject altogether. Are your opinions so weak that you cannot argue her point head-on?

Ms. Basore wrote a passionate and articulate article expressing opinions about the hate-filled Iranian President, many of which are shared by me and other students. Your criticisms of her article all suffered from either want of fact, or simply didn't address the point Ms. Basore actually made.

Reading your article, Mr. Schuld, was a real shame.


Matthew Moss
WMU Student