Search This Blog
De Omnibus Dubitandum - Lux Veritas
Thursday, December 6, 2012
Sunday, December 2, 2012
Allow me to state categorically that I believe in the Theory of Evolution. Why? Because it clearly presents incontrovertible scientific evidence that there must be an Intelligent Designer! Wow; now that’s a somewhat startling observation; don’t you think? Let’s explore this. On Saturday, December 10, 2011 I posted the article Shall Every Knee Bow? This is a recap and expansion of that commentary, and I will probably repeat this article with more expansions on this issue every December.
There was an article that I came across that stated, “Many atheist scientists take their kids to church”! The article went on to say that; “about one in five atheist scientists with children involve their families with religious institutions even if they do not agree with the teachings, according to a study done by Rice University and the University at Buffalo.” The article pointed out that “The findings surrounding atheists shouldn't be too surprising, since the Pew Forum Religious Survey taken back in 2008 that showed 21 percent of self-described atheists responded that they believe in God.”
Does everyone really find this to be all that extraordinary? Anthropologists have noted that in every culture in the world, and in all of human history, religion has played an important role in people’s lives. There was one prominent atheist, Antony Flew who claimed at the end of his life he was now a believer. Why? Is it true ‘there are no atheists in foxholes’? Of course the explanation was the he had lost his mind; yet even Albert Einstein, who was not a religious person in any sense, and absolutely rejected the idea of a personal God, rejected the idea of atheism.
For the believers among my readers the explanation is simple; we are designed to believe. For the unbelievers among my readers the explanation is simple also. There is no other logical explanation!
For many years I have said that “everything is the basics”. What does that mean? It means that in order to understand anything we must explore the foundational thinking of what it is we are trying to understand. If the foundation is flawed the entire structure of thinking is built on a false premise and will collapse under scrutiny from its own weight; that is if we wish to really see the truth. And that is the crux of the matter isn’t it?
Believing takes on many forms. For some it has to do with a higher power. For others it can take on the worship of oneself, for others it can take on the worship of some philosophy or other; but we all seem to have the desire to look to some higher explanation for existence, and human existence in particular. But one thing seems clear; ‘believing’ is inherent to our genetic code. Otherwise how can anyone explain why so many have believed so much over so long a time of human history, and in so many different cultures? Of course, the problem for the unbelievers among my readers with this explanation is that they would then have to explain how that genetic code was designed in that manner…or designed at all for that matter…. if there is no higher power.
I do find it fascinating how some can believe that Intelligent Design is “a pig that won’t fly”! The design is so complicated that it defies explanation as to how infinitely small mutations over millions of years could bring us (and all else in the universe) to what we are now. Whether one disagrees or agrees with evolution, I question how anyone can say that there is no designer. Some feel that an intelligent designer used evolution. Some feel evolution is a mistake constantly making more mistakes and changing everything all the time all by accident. I wonder how anyone can explain how this can happen by accident and develop successful organisms since "geneticists estimate that 99 out of 100 mutations are harmful, and about 20 out of the 99 are lethal."
According the Theory of Evolution life started when electricity in some form such as lightening charged some cells existing in a chemical rich ocean soup and thus became life. There is absolutely no evidence that this ever occurred, and there is no evidence that it can occur since no one has been able to duplicate this mythical event in a lab….ever. They have been able to get cells to group together, but it isn’t life. These cells are all lacking in all the things that make life possible, including DNA. If life started in the ocean in some chemical rich soup, through some accidental electrical discharge; how did that cell, or group of cells, replicate themselves? That's foundational!
Evolutionally thought would require millions of years of mutations before the next step to propagation would come into being. If that is so; how did they replicate? If we are to believe what proponents of evolutionary theory claim, then we have to recognize that these mythical cells would have died within seconds, minutes or days; but they would have ceased to exist long before they could have reproduced. How do I know that?
Let's go back to the foundational question once again! If
life could only advance from active cells in the ocean in some chemical rich soup, which came into being as a result of some accidental electrical discharge; how did that cell, or group of cells, replicate themselves to become what we are all now through a series of mutations occurring over millions of years? As we explore this we see this leaves a very serious is crack in the foundation of their theory….and logic.When you think this out correctly the very foundation for the explanation propounded by scientists gets even more complicated and incomprehensible. If such an event really did take place, the first order of business would not be propagation; the first order of business would be survival!
Survival means that this mythical cell, or cells, would have to have a system that allowed them to recognize the need for nutrition. In order for any of this to occur the cells would have to be self aware to some extant no matter to how small a degree; that in itself requires some sort of advanced design. Then it would have to be able recognize the need for nutrition, it would also have to be able to recognize what was nutritional and what was not; it would require a digestive system; which would require an internal biological mechinism for the organism to recognize nutrition from what would become waste during the absorption process, and then an energy storage and utilization system, and that would require a system for waste elimination. Then and only then would propagation come into play! Once again; the organism couldn’t have survived without these advanced fundamental functions. That seems to me to be an entirely complex organism with multiple advanced biological systems in place, with each being absolutely dependent on the other for this whole scheme to work. Does that seem rational if it takes millions of years of mutations as atheistic scientists claim? And…once again….. we are expected to believe came about after an electrical storm.
Okay, let’s, for the sake of argument say that it did happen, it still meant the organism had to have some advanced biological functions. If so; doesn’t that imply planning and design? Doesn’t planning and design require intelligence? For all of them to come into existence at once seems impossible without some predetermined design. Don’t you think? Which brings me back to the beginning!
Take a woman’s monthly cycle. It is amazingly complex! The right amount of chemicals, hormones and enzymes would have to come into play in exactly the right sequence of time in order to finish the cycle. However, if a woman becomes pregnant during the cycle another whole set of chemical conditions would come into play. How could any organism "know" how to plan for two diametrically opposing end results? Remembering that there are untold species in the world that have cycles unique unto themselves. That means that this would have to be done an incalculable number of times in an incalculable number of organisms. We are to believe that this happens through a series of positive accidents that would overcome all of these deadly accidents! Isn't that a form of belief, i.e. faith? It does seem to defy logic...or science as it were!
How would an organism know what chemicals to develop over millions of years; and more importantly; how would these organisms know how to make them? How did the organism know that hormones and enzymes were needed along with other chemicals? How would the organism know how to organize them? How did the organism know which chemicals would work harmoniously together and in conjunction with enzymes and hormones, and how did the organism know what the end result be would follow afterward without some sort of plan?
However, even with a design; how could incredibly small mutations be of value during the whole process of millions of years, and in point of fact it seems reasonable that these mutations would hinder continued existence; not enhance it. But even if you accept the idea of small changes over millions of years the question still remains; how could all of that come into being without intelligence behind it? How could so many complex systems come into being all at once without some sort of design and an application of the design? Wouldn’t the presumption be that these cells already had an amazingly complex chemical make-up that would create an end result? If so; doesn’t that imply planning and design? Doesn’t planning and design require intelligence? And if these events actually did happen, and cells came into existence with all these complicated biological systems in place; what would you call it? Creation?
I can understand anyone’s reason for not subscribing to any religious group. The sanguinary history of the world’s religions has not done much to inspire confidence over human history. So I can understand someone being un-religious, and I can understand why someone would believe that there may be a higher power that doesn’t interfere in the lives of humanity. I can understand why people might not be sure and proclaim to be agnostic…although I consider that to be pragmatic atheism. What I can’t understand is how anyone cannot believe that there must be a planner behind this phenomenally complex reality we call....existence! And that is why I say that I believe in the Theory of Evolution. Because it scientifically proves that there must be an Intelligent Designer! A Creator!
Friday, November 30, 2012
Fitch downgrades Argentina and predicts default
Credit rating agency Fitch has downgraded Argentina, which is locked in a court battle in New York over its debt, and said the country would probably default.
Fitch cut its long-term rating for Argentina to "CC" from "B," a downgrade of five notches, and cut its short-term rating to "C" from "B". A rating of "C" is one step above default, AP reported. US judge Thomas Griesa of Manhattan federal court last week ordered Argentina to set aside $1.3bn for certain investors in its bonds by December 15, even as Argentina pursues appeals. Those investors don't want to go along with a debt restructuring that followed an Argentine default in 2002. If Argentina is forced to pay in full, other holders of debt totaling more than $11bn are expected to demand immediate payment as well. ….To Read More…..
With a chip on his shoulder larger than his margin of victory, Barack Obama is approaching his second term by replicating the mistake of his first. Then his overreaching involved health care — expanding the entitlement state at the expense of economic growth. Now he seeks another surge of statism, enlarging the portion of gross domestic product grasped by government and dispensed by politics. The occasion is the misnamed “fiscal cliff,” the proper name for which is: the Democratic Party’s agenda.
For 40 years the party’s principal sources of energy and money — liberal activists, government employees unions — have advocated expanding government’s domestic reach by raising taxes and contracting its foreign reach by cutting defense. Obama’s four years as one of the most liberal senators and his four presidential years indicate he agrees. Like other occasionally numerate but prudently reticent liberals, he surely understands that the entitlement state he favors requires raising taxes on the cohort that has most of the nation’s money — the middle class. To Read More…..
How many times have we heard that the only thing standing in the way of a grand bargain to reduce our growing national debt is Republican intransigence on taxes? If Republicans would only agree to dump Grover Norquist, Democrats will agree to cut spending and reform entitlements……all join hands and sing Kumbaya as we usher in a new era of compromise and fiscal responsibility.
Except that now that Republicans have agreed to raise taxes….. as part of an agreement to avoid the looming fiscal cliff, liberals appear to have decided that there really isn’t a need to cut spending after all “Suddenly the clear and present danger to the American economy isn’t that we’ll fail to reduce the deficit enough; it is, instead, that we’ll reduce the deficit too much,” warns Paul Krugman. All this worry about debt and deficits is “an entirely contrived crisis,” writes Robert Kuttner in the Huffington Post. After all, as the New York Times explains, “deficits are actually a good thing when the economy is deeply depressed, so deficit reduction should wait until the economy is stronger.” “So,” sums up Robert Reich, “can we please stop obsessing about future budget deficits? They’re distracting our attention from what we should be obsessing about — jobs and growth.”…… Republicans are simply negotiating with themselves and with the news media. Democrats haven’t even come to the table....To Read More…..
My Take – They must all be mad!
The invisible establishment Republicans
By Robert Ringer Email | Archive
Now that masochist Republicans have once again managed to find a way to go down to defeat – against a failed, collectivist president who received 10 percent fewer votes than in 2008 – conservatives and libertarians are blaming “establishment Republicans.” Even most of the supposed conservatives roaming the halls of Congress talk disdainfully about them. Which raises the question, who, exactly, are these “establishment Republicans”? …… So, contrary to what many Republicans believe, Barack Obama is not the problem. He is but a symptom of the problem. Over the past hundred years or so, the United States government has been infiltrated by lots of communists. That’s nothing new. But in the days of yore, Republicans and Democrats worked to track down the commies, root them out and, in the case of the Rosenbergs, even execute them. Let’s face it, on a level playing field, a communist is no match for a true patriot who is passionate about liberty. But therein lies the problem. Today, not only do virtually all Democrats not believe in individual liberty, neither do a majority of Republicans. Sadly, most politicians in both parties are now statists, meaning that they believe the state should have the power to violate the sovereignty of individual citizens at will. To Read More….
Trading principle for power
By Andrew Napolitano Email | Archive
When President Obama won re-election last month by a larger margin than even his most fervent supporters had expected, though with fewer popular votes than he received in 2008, most commentators initially opined that not much had changed in Washington. The president would remain in the White House for another four years, the Democrats would keep control of the Senate, and the House would stay in Republican hands. Most Republicans re-elected to both houses of Congress had publicly pledged not to vote to raise taxes under any circumstances. And most of those Republicans have adhered to that promise – until now.
Over the Thanksgiving weekend, the false congressional fiscal conservatives in the Republican Party began to reveal their true selves. Led by the Republican presidential standard bearer in 2008, Arizona Sen. John McCain, at least a half-dozen Republican members of Congress have renounced their public promises never to vote to raise taxes. In the case of Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., Rep. and Sen.-elect Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., and Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., they had restated their promises, directly or indirectly, as recently as last month during their successful campaigns. Did they blatantly dupe the voters? Did they genuinely change their minds? Did they ever sincerely accept the pro-freedom anti-tax logic? To Read More….
By Richard McGregor in Washington
Just over two years ago, at a low point in Barack Obama’s first term, his then press secretary lashed out at the president’s liberal critics for flaying the White House’s failure on pet policies such as universal healthcare and allowing gays to serve openly in the military. Labelling the critics the “professional left”, Robert Gibbs said: “They will be satisfied when we have Canadian healthcare and we’ve eliminated the Pentagon. That’s not reality. Since then the complaints have died down. For anyone on the left, Mr Obama has delivered in the most fundamental way, beating back a Republican candidate and party that had in its sights much of the US postwar social safety net…..
Since the election, many of Mr. Obama’s allies, in Congress, the unions and various lobby groups, have called for these so-called entitlement programmes to be taken off the table in the fiscal cliff talks. Mr. Obama’s victory, they argue, was a mandate for lifting marginal tax rates for the wealthiest Americans and shouldn’t be traded away by cutting benefits for the poor. Mr. Obama appears to agree, at least in the short term, and he may welcome his allies’ agitation on his behalf. The united front he is drawing together to press Republicans to move on tax rates suggests he sees no reason to trade on this issue for the moment either…..To Read More…..
By James Politi
President Barack Obama and Democratic candidates for the Senate campaigned heavily ahead of this month’s victorious elections on a simple message: raise taxes on the rich and make them bear a greater share of the burden in deficit reduction. But with talks to avert the so-called fiscal cliff in full swing, Democrats are resisting proposals championed by Republicans to hit the rich on the spending side by curtailing their government health and pension benefits. Republicans have made clear that they are willing to accept some higher revenue from the wealthy in any agreement, but only if Democrats concede to some structural changes to Medicare and Social Security, the two largest safety net schemes supporting elderly Americans. To Read More….
My Take – The wealthy who are receiving Social Security and Medicare paid into it in order to collect. That means those dollars aren’t subsidies, they are premiums for paying into an insurance or investment plan. That is why there was never a means test to SS in the past because it was sold insisting it wasn’t a tax; it was sold as an insurance or investment for retirement. So now…..it turns out that those who resisted SS in the beginning were right…..it is a tax after all. If that is the case then it must be passed accordingly; and I would be willing to bet that it hasn’t.
Editor's Note: This next article is a case of historical deconstructionism in order to make right seem wrong and stupid seem smart. The effect of Smoot Hawley actually went far deeper than reported here. Unemployment after the stock market crash went to 8%. After Smoot Hawley it soared to 15%. Countries apparently paid each other in gold in those days. This bill impacted the world's economy negatively and countries refused to pay debts owed to the U.S., mostly because they felt they couldn't afford to do so, further depressing America's economy. Switzerland actually banned trade with America. For anyone to make such insane claims boggles the imagination. How could you justify this as anything but insanity? It has been said that ideology makes smart people dumb. I think it makes them insane also, all that they need is a charismatic leader and suicide will soon follow. How To Spot a Sociopath – 10 Red Flags That Could Save You From Being Swept Under the Influence of a Charismatic Nut Job
Brown favors law blamed for Great Depression
By Jon Cassidy
Sen. Sherrod Brown’s ideas on economic policy are way out of the mainstream, and would torpedo the global economy if ever enacted. That’s not a hypothetical. It’s historical. In his 2004 book, “Myths of Free Trade,” Brown devotes six pages to a revisionist defense of the infamous Smoot-Hawley tariffs of 1930, which are widely blamed for accelerating the onset of the Great Depression. “The myths of Smoot-Hawley do not withstand the light of day,” Brown writes, going on to list four “myths” that he tries to debunk. The book was hardly a best-seller, but Brown’s views have been getting attention lately, as his race against Republican challenger Josh Mandel could decide the balance of the U.S. Senate. The Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act of 1930 imposed drastic tariffs on more than 20,000 imported goods. By 1932, the average American tariff on dutiable imports was 59.1 percent. Only once before, in 1830, had it been so high.
The tariffs provoked U.S. trading partners to drastic retaliatory measures. The numbers tell the story. Between 1929 and 1932, U.S. imports fell from $4.3 billion to $1.3 billion. Exports fell from $7 billion to $2.5 billion. By comparison, total federal spending was $2.6 billion in 1929. Everybody learned a painful lesson. Except Brown…. To Read More....
USPS Chief Lays Out Plan for the Agency’s Survival
Published: Wednesday, 28 Nov 2012
The head of the financially struggling U.S. Postal Service said the agency must be allowed to ease the terms of prepayments into a retiree health-care fund and eliminate general mail delivery on Saturday. Patrick Donahoe told "CBS This Morning" the agency isn't asking Congress for money. He said, "I think most people don't realize, we're 100 percent self-sufficient. We pay our own way." But the postal chief notes the agency is losing $15.9 billion this year. …to Read More….
Phil Matier: Oakland Crime Rate Soaring As City Loses Officers
November 28, 2012 7:18 PM
Burglaries are up a startling 43 percent in Oakland this year compared to last, part of an ever-growing crime problem in the city. According to the latest numbers from the Oakland Police Department, more than 11,000 homes, cars or businesses have been broken into so far this year – translating to about 33 burglaries a day. The most popular targets have been cars with more than 5,700 burglarized so far this year. To Read More…..
State Senator Proposes Dissolving City Of Detroit
November 28, 2012 11:08 AM
It would no doubt be controversial, but the idea of dissolving the fiscally struggling city of Detroit and absorbing it into Wayne County is being tossed around in Lansing. WWJ Lansing Bureau Chief Tim Skubick reports some state Republicans are talking about giving the city the option to vote itself into bankruptcy. And mid-Michigan Senator Rick Jones said all options should be considered — including dissolving the city. “If we have to, that is one idea we have to look at. We really have to look at everything that is on the table,” Jones said. “Again, if this goes to federal bankruptcy, every employee down there will suffer, the city will suffer and the vultures will come in and take the jewels of Detroit and they will be gone.” Local consultant Tom Watkins has proposed this in the past, but the idea has never played well among Detroiters. To Read More…..
It is interesting that the French Revolution was the foundation for worldwide socialism, and in stark contrast to the American Revolution. The trouble with the French Revolution was that it strove for utopia imposed from the top. Socialism is a failure. It has been a failure everywhere it has been tried. It cannot be anything but a failure because it isn’t based on individual rights. Socialism is a system based on envy and hate. It is a system based on equal outcomes, not equal opportunities. Is it any wonder that they are on their Fifth Republic? Can the Sixth be that far away? Yet America is still on its first Republic. So why have we adopted European style socialism, which is destroying the European Union. So what do the French do recently? They voted in a socialist government because they didn't like the austerity programs imposed by the previous government; which wasn’t all that austere considering they are on the verge of bankruptcy, much like the rest of Europe and the U.S.; and for the same reasons.
Thursday, November 29, 2012
Editor's Note: This is a follow up on this issue with my post of the video on November 7, 2012.
By Christopher Monckton -
Romney won 90% of the Jewish Orthodox vote in New York City districts. After the election there were attempts to claim that Obama had won the Orthodox Jewish vote based on a few districts where he broke even............ To Read More....
The EU's food safety agency definitively rejected Wednesday a bombshell French report linking genetically modified corn to cancer, saying it failed to meet "acceptable scientific standards."
Harvested cobs of corn dry on the ground outside a house near Gaomi, in eastern China's Shandong province. A French study published earlier this year said rats fed on NK603 corn developed tumours. AFP - The EU's food safety agency definitively rejected Wednesday a bombshell French report linking genetically modified corn to cancer, saying it failed to meet "acceptable scientific standards." "Serious defects in the design and methodology of a paper by Seralini et al. mean it does not meet acceptable scientific standards," the European Food Safety Authority said in a statement. "Consequently it is not possible to draw valid conclusions about the occurrence of tumours in the rats tested," the agency said. EFSA, which reviews the use and authorisation of GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms), added that it "finds there is no need to re-examine its previous safety evaluations of NK603," the genetically modified maize developed by US agribusiness giant Monsanto…To Read More……Editor’s Note: This is a follow up on the October 3, 2012 post: French Study on GMO's: Making a mockery of scientific ethics. Make no mistake about this. If it wasn't for the internet this piece of junk science would have joined Silent Spring and all the other junk science touted by the greenies as foundational for tons of new and unwarranted regulations. We are still living with regulations formulated by the EPA based on the fraudulent study from Tulane University regarding endocrine disruption and pesticides.
When it comes to setting public policy fires, Democrats get away with serial arson. A maladroit opposition party and a complaisant media ensure that the public will never pin the tail of blame on the donkey. Nowhere is this more evident than with interventionist housing policy.
Decade’s worth of government intervention in the housing market almost single-handedly took down the economy. Bill Clinton’s National Homeownership Strategy did to the housing sector what Obamacare will do for the healthcare sector. His administration created entire offices and programs dedicated to forcing banks to underwrite risky mortgages under the dubious goal of universal home ownership. Concurrently, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac bought up the lion’s share of the subprime mortgage securities and fueled the toxic asset bubble. The bubble popped, bringing down the entire economy with it.
Instead of learning from the deleterious effects of “fair lending” and universal homeownership programs, Obama has juiced up the goals of the Community Reinvestment Act that underwrote risky loans.
So what have we gotten for all the risky loans? We sunk $140 billion into Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and now we are on the hook for a $16.3 billion shortfall at the Federal Housing Administration. Taxpayers have not been reimbursed one dime for the housing bailout. Just wait until the Fed commences another few years of blowing up the housing market through MBS purchases; we’ll be back in 2008 in no time!
Amidst all the talk over the fiscal cliff, why is nobody talking about the stolen funds sunk into the dead rat GSEs? Josh Rosner, co-author of the must-read Reckless Endangerment, reminds us all of the forgotten bailout in yesterday’s edition of the New York Times.
Last summer, the United States Treasury decided that, rather than require the G.S.E.’s to pay interest on their debt to taxpayers, it would require any profits generated by Fannie and Freddie to be swept into the Treasury’s coffers. Unfortunately, this has created problems of its own because it has led to the commingling of the still legally private G.S.E. funds with those of the federal government — and it complicates the ultimate recapture of Fannie’s and Freddie’s value. Moreover, as the International Monetary Fund recently warned, the practice adds major risk to the United States balance sheet.
A better approach is possible — but to devise the right plan, lawmakers will have to start giving the issue the attention it deserves.
Well, here is a better solution. Senator McCain and Congressman Hensarling have a bill (S.693/H.R 1182) that will shut down the GSEs, albeit in a gradual way and with the understanding that they currently back 90% of all mortgages. His bill would impose a two-year limit on the current conservatorship and chart a course to complete privatization after 5 years. It would immediately end all affordable housing mandates, force the GSEs to pay back the taxpayer bailout money, cap their maximum portfolio size, reduce their market share and shrink their competitive advantage over private capital.
Housing policy is one of the most banal issues for many casual consumers of news, but it was the catalyst of the Great Recession. The blood of the entire housing and financial meltdown is on the hands of those who subscribe to Obama’s housing policies. It’s time someone demand accountability for the egregious federal intervention in the housing market. Otherwise, we’ll be in the midst of a new housing crisis in a few years.
Cross-posted from The Madison Project
When it comes to setting public policy fires, Democrats get away with serial arson. A maladroit opposition party and a complaisant media ensure that the public will never pin the tail of blame on the donkey. Nowhere is this more evident than with interventionist housing policy. Decade’s worth of government intervention in the housing market almost single-handedly took down the economy. Bill Clinton’s National Home ownership Strategy did to the housing sector what Obamacare will do for the healthcare sector.
His administration created entire offices and programs dedicated to forcing banks to underwrite risky mortgages under the dubious goal of universal home ownership. Concurrently, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac bought up the lion’s share of the subprime mortgage securities and fueled the toxic asset bubble. The bubble popped, bringing down the entire economy with it. Instead of learning from the deleterious effects of “fair lending” and universal home ownership programs, Obama has juiced up the goals of the Community Reinvestment Act that underwrote risky loans.
Editor's Note: This now appears here, and its now ten years later, and I've published this in full since the RedState site original addresses for their articles seem to stop working, and I don't want to lose the information. Also you may wish to read my commentary entitled; Sub-Prime Pest Control, which deals with this issue later in the article. The patterns are the same even though the headline is different.