Friday, October 31, 2008
Surely Sen. Obama would not treat his promises that he has made about YOUR tax money...as lightly as he did the money that people were going to give to HIM. Too bad Tim Russert isn't still around to ask the tough questions. Looks like nobody else is interested in doing it.
In November 2007, Obama answered "Yes" to Common Cause when asked "If you are nominated for President in 2008 and your major opponents agree to forgo private funding in the general election campaign, will you participate in the presidential public financing system?"
Obama wrote: "In February 2007, I proposed a novel way to preserve the strength of the public financing system in the 2008 election. My plan requires both major party candidates to agree on a fundraising truce, return excess money from donors, and stay within the public financing system for the general election. My proposal followed announcements by some presidential candidates that they would forgo public financing so they could raise unlimited funds in the general election. The Federal Election Commission ruled the proposal legal, and Senator John McCain (R-AZ) has already pledged to accept this fundraising pledge. If I am the Democratic nominee, I will aggressively pursue an agreement with the Republican nominee to preserve a publicly financed general election."
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
MO Non-Partisan Court Plan (What is it?)
Section 25 of Article V of the MO State Constitution
Conservatives Speak out on the Non-Partisan Court Plan
Despite making up just four percent of total attorneys in Missouri, personal injury lawyers account for 100 percent of the Appellate Judicial Commission. This has resulted in the transformation of a non-partisan, non-ideological process into a politically-slanted one. Nineteen of the last 21 nominees for the Supreme Court have been Democrats. Four of the last six have been members of the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys.
...since its adoption, the public has not voted any appellate judge out of office, and only two circuit judges have been voted out of office. Judge Marion D. Waltner of Jackson County was voted out in 1942. The other, Judge John R. Hutcherson of Clay County, was voted out in 1992 after receiving failing reviews from lawyers in the judicial evaluation survey.
Debate of New York State Constitution 1868
Pennsylvania Constitution Development
Where do Judges Come From?
Hillenblog says...I actually like this post below by Calvin Dooglas (Maricopa County, AZ)
I think the idea is that at local levels, a judge is still expected to be a barometer of how the community interprets its own laws. The values of a particular municipality are particularly important in cases such as obscenity. Local judges are also more than adjudicators, they bring with them ideas to reform the community justice system. Local judges also do not set precedent the same way federal judges do, so local judges are not typically elected because of their stance on the issue du jour.
It's not laid out in the constitution that local judges must be elected rather than appointed, so it's really a decision made by states and municipalities. I think the election of local judges helps keep local government in touch with the communities they work for. A city's attitude towards certain laws can change dramatically in a short time, and they need judges who reflect those values. The huge amounts of caselaw and observational evidence that Federal and Supreme Court judges require to change their interpretation of a law simply do not exist at the local level, and therefore local judges have latitude to make decisions based on the attitudes of the community. Elections allow citizens to choose judges whose philosophies and priorities more closely reflect their own. Election of judges is part of how community values/common law become local policy, and eventually national policy.
The election rather than appointment of local judicial and law enforcement also means that a mayor cannot make the courts and cops implementers of his priorities. The complex system of checks and balances is not nearly as well-defined at the local level, and is not necessary when direct appeal to a small number of relatively homogeneous citizens is possible. Were local judges and sheriffs appointed for long terms, the only way to fix a corrupt or ineffective city officials would be through impeachment. For local government with very limited funding and participation, the idea of having to deal with calls and motions for impeachment would be an incredible waste of time.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
However I also believe that we often don't take advantage of the opportunity's that we have build each other up...to enourage one another...or just to honestly tell each other that we love, admire, respect or just plain like spending time with someone. SO...in that vein...this post has three goals. First, I have a list of positive uplifting thoughts that I would like to express. Second, I would like you to add your own uplifiting encouraging comments, shout outs or thank you's. Third, I would like to see if this "Words of Life..." post can achieve as many comments as the previous (controversial) one. Allow me to start.
- Cindy, I love you more than you can know...you are a wonderful mother, tireless homaker and you make our house a home that is full of love and fun. I am so lucky that you picked me to by your husband and I adore you, and thank you for being my wife.
- Skyler, I am so proud of you...you are such a great young woman...and I can't wait to see what the Lord does with you and your life. You are too much like me in so many ways...that I fear for you, but also I like it when we think alike...and I know that once you set your mind to something you can do anything you want. I love you...and I am so excited for your wedding. I think that the Lord has blessed you with a great guy...and we are so happy for you.
- Barrett, You are such a great young man. Your mother and I are so proud of you. Your leadership abilities, you are a much better athelete than I ever was, I love it that you are so smart and interested in technical stuff like I am...and you have a great sense of humor and a fabulous all around great guy. We can't wait to see how the Lord uses you in your life for His service.
- Chad, We are so glad that you are now a part of our family...we love you and we could not have picked a (soon to be) son-in-law any better than you. Cindy and I are so proud to see you and Skyler up on the stage leading worship, you guys are so good together...we only think that the Lord may take you away from us to go off to some huge church somewhere to showcase your talents for Him. Thanks for being Skylers Knight in shining armor...and loving her. We trust you to take care of her for the rest of your lives. Good luck, your going to need it. (that was still uplifting...:-)
- Becky...I am so proud of you...that you and Jon and your kids have done what no other BBFI Missionaries have ever done...cracked the iron boot. I know that what you are doing is hard, and I think you are doing a great job. Your work and perserverance will pay off many times. We think and pray for you many times a day...I love you...Keep up the good work!
- Mom & Dad. You were the best parents that any kid could have asked for...I love you both so much...and I appreciate the upbringing and heritage that you have given me. I feel especially blessed that the Lord plucked me out of who knows what kind of a life and dropped me into your wonderful home. The older I get, the more I realize what great parents you are.
- Rick & Jan...thanks for giving me a chance to prove myself and for creating a wonderful place to work. DMP is a special place and I feel priviledged to be able to work there.
- Rog ...Thanks for being a great freind, I admire that you taught yourself to play guitar, you have great business wisdom and I envy your ability to manage people.
- Scotty...You are a true loyal friend, I admire your ability to never say anything bad about anyone and I know that if I ever need anything you will help me out. I hope I can repay you in the same manner.
- Rachel & Matt...You two are really some of the greatest parnets that I know...and I think it is awesome that the Lord is blessing you with anohter baby.
- Teri Roy...I love seeing you at the Big Piano...
- Eddie...Thanks for your word that you gave us today...It sounds like your lunch with Bruce Wilkinson was awesome...and I encourage you to seek that vision and lets all make it happen.
- JoeR...I think you are wise beyond your years...and I respect you greatly...I think you are doing a great job at DMP and at HSBC.
- Gary & Lisa...Thanks for being such great friends...and for your example of how to serve the Lord and others. Cindy and I love you both.
- Holly Tucker (and Bryan)... I think the way you minister to the kids in our church is awesome and I know that you have such a huge soft heart under that kevlar. I think you rock.
- Brad & Jenny....Your livin the American Dream...Keep it up...I can't wait till you have babies. I predict twins.
- Crystal. I am very proud of you... You are so special to our family...We love having you around our home. Thanks for being our other daughter.
- Morgan Amellia...we think that you are so special...we Love you very much.
- Little A...You are my definition of a Cheerleader...peppy, great personality, always positive...and you have the prettiest eyes of anyone I know outside of Cindy.
- Jonny A...I think you are a great person and the more I talk to you about business, I realize you are a great manager of people and I think you have a great future ahead of you.
- AW...I have a secret crush on you...don't tell Cindy or Admin...they don't know. You seriously remind me of Jackie O, you have that "It" quality that makes everyone you meet want to be your friend.
- Admin...I think you are way smart...and intimidating and I like to watch you sit back and watch people. You are a talented musician...and you personify the saying that "still waters run deep". I think it is funny that you would just as soon not be around other people yet you are constantly in the center of a large mob of family and friends. I have no idea why AW missed this when she read it the first time.
- Jenny & Chris...I think you are so cool. Quirky...and perfectly fun. Your boys are so smart, and have such great percocious attitudes. That can only come from their parents. I like hanging around you.
- Sammy B. Your a good friend and a nicer guy there could never be.
- Greg Roy....I would vote for you for anything office you wanted to run for.
- Jen & Jonny...I have fun when were together and I love being able to give Jen a hard time. You have the cutest kids.
- Tommy D. I think that you have done a good job at HSBC...and I'm glad were friends. I enjoy our lunches. Laura...I regret not having them sing to you on your birthday today...and no sombraro.
- Franco...mad dance floor skilz man... I am impressed.
- Tiffany Lyoness. You are infectiously fun...and I can't believe you are still single.
- Holly...you are doing a great job on the VA praise band...and I think you sound super with Chad and Skyler.
- Toy Helen...I appreciate you spunk....and your joy and I always love to talk to you. Oh and your naughty too...I like that.
- Andrea...not many people would go live in Nepal, for any reason...I respect you immensly...and I like being your friend.
- Dannah....You are one of two that Cindy has approved to be my second wife (in case Cindy gets hit by an ADT truck) I'm sorry that the news can't be better for you...but the good news is...I'm not letting anything happen to her)
- Island Rider....I have immense respect for you for deciding what it is that you have a passion for...and making it into a successful business. Also, I have always had appreciation for anyone that can convince a woman that is way over their head to marry them. Way to go.
- Jeff B. You are truly a kind and amazing person. I think that the way that you have carried yourself at DMP is impressive. You could take advantage of your position in many ways and in all my years working along side you, I have never seen you do anything like that. I look forward to working with you for many years to come.
- COX...Your a creative loyal friend. A movie Guru like I have never met before.
- Kyle M...I appreciate your sincerity, your work ethic, and your taste in wives...(I always thought that Amy reminded me of my Cindy). Thanks for helping me get my "Server Room vent installed" well...encouraging me to do it...it went great...and the server room is soo much cooler now. Also...Amy...I think you have a good man there...and he is so LUCKY to have you...never let him forget it. Your tops.
- Ashley Arnold...I have enjoyed getting to know you, and I had no idea who your parents were until the last 6 months. I have no idea why that matters here on this post...but I typed it. Weird.
- Rachel...You are so much fun...I like giving you a hard time, I appreciate you and Matt's commitment to Skyler and Chad, and even though I don't want to. I will debunk the rumor that I just created that you are pregnant...again.
- Steph (An-drew)...You guys are such a great example to our kids, and I appreciate our friendship over the years. Steph, as our first adopted daughter...we only wish that you could spend more time with us...but we understand that you have a life to live, and the Lord has placed you in a specific spot to accomplish His will. We are going to miss you guys so much. Steph your committment to 10th inning and being able to work with you was the only thing that got me thru the troubled Concesions Trailor saga's....Thanks for your committment. Drew...Thanks for loving Steph...and to the Allbrittons/O'Donnel families... Thanks for including the Hillens and making us feel like just another part of your crazy extended family.
I know I have left a bunch of people out...and I will add you in the comments as this week progresses. This week...choose to uplift...and take a second here to encourage someone...even if they might never see it...it will make you feel better...it just might make the difference to someone close to you. Words of life...make them words to live by.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Let me make 10 statements here and see if we can get some controversy brewing.
- I think it's wrong to allow your kids to dress up for Halloween.
- I think all couples should see each other before their wedding.
- I think all Missions Candles should have more than one label.
- I think smoke machines, strobe lights and dramatic lighting in church is just fine.
- I think that Hussein is a funny middle name.
- I think that Kate from Jon & Kate plus 8 is a contentious woman.
- I think Skyler is too young to get married.
- I think that the King James is easier to understand than other versions.
- I think that fanny pack's don't look good on anyone...even my mother.
- I think that Jen should bring back her blog.
PS..if you don't want to take me to task on any of these items...then add some of your own controversial subjects...and we will see what the others think about your comments.
by Robert George
What is going on here?
Sen. Barack Obama is the most extreme pro-abortion candidate ever to seek the office of President of the United States. He is the most extreme pro-abortion member of the United States Senate. Indeed, he is the most extreme pro-abortion legislator ever to serve in either house of the United States Congress.
I have examined the arguments advanced by Obama's self-identified pro-life supporters, and they are spectacularly weak. It is nearly unfathomable to me that those advancing them can honestly believe what they are saying. But before proving my claims about Obama's abortion extremism, let me explain why I have described Obama as "pro-abortion" rather than "pro-choice."
According to the standard argument for the distinction between these labels, nobody is pro-abortion. Everybody would prefer a world without abortions. After all, what woman would deliberately get pregnant just to have an abortion? But given the world as it is, sometimes women find themselves with unplanned pregnancies at times in their lives when having a baby would present significant problems for them. So even if abortion is not medically required, it should be permitted, made as widely available as possible and, when necessary, paid for with taxpayers' money.
The defect in this argument can easily be brought into focus if we shift to the moral question that vexed an earlier generation of Americans: slavery. Many people at the time of the American founding would have preferred a world without slavery but nonetheless opposed abolition. Such people - Thomas Jefferson was one - reasoned that, given the world as it was, with slavery woven into the fabric of society just a s it had often been throughout history, the economic consequences of abolition for society as a whole and for owners of plantations and other businesses that relied on slave labor would be dire. Many people who argued in this way were not monsters but honest and sincere, albeit profoundly mistaken. Some (though not Jefferson) showed their personal opposition to slavery by declining to own slaves themselves or freeing slaves whom they had purchased or inherited. They certainly didn't think anyone should be forced to own slaves. Still, they maintained that slavery should remain a legally permitted option and be given constitutional protection.
Would we describe such people, not as pro-slavery, but as "pro-choice"? Of course we would not. It wouldn't matter to us that they were "personally opposed" to slavery, or that they wished that slavery were "unnecessary," or that they wouldn't dream of forcing anyone to own slaves. We would hoot at the faux sophistication of a placard that said "Against slavery? Don't own one." We would observe that the fundamental divide is between people who believe that law and public power should permit slavery, and those who think that owning slaves is an unjust choice that should be prohibited.
Just for the sake of argument, though, let us assume that there could be a morally meaningful distinction between being "pro-abortion" and being "pro-choice." Who would qualify for the latter description? Barack Obama certainly would not. For, unlike his running mate Joe Biden, Obama does not think that abortion is a purely private choice that public authority should refrain from getting involved in. Now, Senator Biden is hardly pro-life. He believes that the killing of the unborn should be legally permitted and relatively unencumbered. But unlike Obama, at least Biden has sometimes opposed using taxpayer dollars to fund abortion, thereby leaving Americans free to choose not to implicate themselves in it. If we stretch things to create a meaningful category called "pro-choice," then Biden might be a plausible candidate for the label; at least on occasions when he respects your choice or mine not to facilitate deliberate feticide.
The same cannot be said for Barack Obama. For starters, he supports legislation that would repeal the Hyde Amendment, which protects pro-life citizens from having to pay for abortions that are not necessary to save the life of the mother and are not the result of rape or incest. The abortion industry laments that this longstanding federal law, according to the pro-abortion group NARAL, "forces about half the women who would otherwise have abortions to carry unintended pregnancies to term and bear children against their wishes instead." In other words, a whole lot of people who are alive today would have been exterminated in utero were it not for the Hyde Amendment. Obama has promised to reverse the situation so that abortions that the industry complains are not happening (because the federal government is not subsidizing them) would happen.
But this barely scratches the surface of Obama's extremism. He has promised that "the first thing I'd do as President is sign the Freedom of Choice Act" (known as FOCA). This proposed legislation would create a federally guaranteed "fundamental right" to abortion through all nine months of pregnancy, including, as Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia has noted in a statement condemning the proposed Act, "a right to abort a fully developed child in the final weeks for undefined 'health' reasons." In essence, FOCA would abolish virtually every existing state and federal limitation on abortio n, including parental consent and notification laws for minors, state and federal funding restrictions on abortion, and conscience protections for pro-life citizens working in the health-care industry-protections against being forced to participate in the practice of abortion or else lose their jobs. The pro-abortion National Organization for Women has proclaimed with approval that FOCA would "sweep away hundreds of anti-abortion laws [and] policies."
Obama, unlike even many "pro-choice" legislators, opposed the ban on partial-birth abortions when he served in the Illinois legislature and condemned the Supreme Court decision that upheld legislation banning this heinous practice. He has referred to a baby conceived inadvertently by a young woman as a "punishment" that she should not endure. He has st ated that women's equality requires access to abortion on demand. Appallingly, he wishes to strip federal funding from pro-life crisis pregnancy centers that provide alternatives to abortion for pregnant women in need. There is certainly nothing "pro-choice" about that.
Senator Obama, despite the urging of pro-life members of his own party, has not endorsed or offered support for the Pregnant Women Support Act, the signature bill of Democrats for Life, meant to reduce abortions by providing assistance for women facing crisis pregnancies. In fact, Obama has opposed key provisions of the Act, including providing coverage of unborn children in the State Children's Health Insurance Program (S-CHIP), and informed consent for women about the effects of abortion and the gestational age of their child. This legislation would not make a single abortion illegal. It simply seeks to make it easier for pregnant women to make the choice not to abort their babies. Here is a concrete test of whether Obama is "pro-choice" rather than pro-abortion. He flunked. Even Senator Edward Kennedy voted to include coverage of unborn children in S-CHIP. But Barack Obama stood resolutely with the most stalwart abortion advocates in opposing it.
In an act of breathtaking injustice which the Obama campaign lied about until critics produced documentary proof of what he had done, as an Illinois state senator Obama opposed legislation to protect children who are born alive, either as a result of an abortionist's unsuccessful effort to kill them in the womb, or by the deliberate delivery of the baby prior to viability. This legislation would not have banned any abortions. Indeed, it included a specific provision ensuring that it did not affect abortion laws. (This is one of the points Obama and his campaign lied about until they were caught.) The federal version of the bill passed unanimously in the United States Senate, winning the support of such ardent advocates of legal abortion as John Kerry and Barbara Boxer. But Barack Obama opposed it and worked to defeat it. For him, a child marked for abortion gets no protection-even ordinary medical or comfort care-even if she is born alive and entirely separated from her mother. So Obama has favored protecting what is literally a form of infanticide.
This ultimate manifestation of Obama's extremism brings us back to the puzzle of his pro-life Evangelical and Catholic apologists.
They typically do not deny the facts I have reported. They could not; each one is a matter of public record. But despite Obama's injustices against the most vulnerable human beings, and despite the extraordinary support he receives from the industry that profits from killing the unborn (which should be a good indicator of where he stands), some Obama supporters insist that he is the better candidate from the pro-life point of view.
They say that his economic and social policies would so diminish the demand for abortion that the overall number would actually go down-despite the federal subsidizing of abortion and the elimination of hundreds of pro-life laws. The way to save lots of unborn babies, they say, is to vote for the pro-abortion-oops! "pro-choice"-candidate. They tell us not to worry that Obama opposes the Hyde Amendment, the Mexico City Policy (against funding abortion abroad), parental consent and notification laws, conscience protections, and the funding of alternatives to embryo-destructive research. They ask us to look past his support for Roe v. Wade, the Freedom of Choice Act, partial-birth abortion, and human cloning and embryo-killing. An Obama presidency, they insist, means less killing of the unborn. This is delusional.
We know that the federal and state pro-life laws and policies that Obama has promised to sweep away (and that John McCain would protect) save thousands of lives every year. Studies conducted by Professor Michael New and other social scientists have removed any doubt. Often enough, the abortion lobby itself confirms the truth of what these scholars have determined. Tom McClusky has observed that Planned Parenthood's own statistics show that in each of the seven states that have FOCA-type legislation on the books, "abortion rates have increased while the national rate has decreased." In Maryland, where a bill similar to the one favored by Obama was enacted in 1991, he notes that "abortion rates have increased by 8 percent while the overall national abortion rate decreased by 9 percent." No one is really surprised. After all, the message clearly conveyed by policies such as those Obama favors is that abortion is a legitimate solution to the problem of unwanted pregnancies - so clearly legitimate that taxpayers should be forced to pay for it.
But for a moment let's suppose, against all the evidence, that Obama's proposals would reduce the number of abortions, even while subsidizing the killing with taxpayer dollars. Even so, many more unborn human beings would likely be killed under Obama than under McCain. A Congress controlled by strong Democratic majorities under Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi would enact the bill authorizing the mass industrial production of human embryos by cloning for research in which they are killed. As president, Obama would sign it. The number of tiny humans created and killed under this legislation (assuming that an efficient human cloning technique is soon perfected) could dwarf the number of lives saved as a result of the reduced demand for abortion-even if we take a delusionally optimistic view of what that number would be.
Barack Obama and John McCain differ on many important issues about which reasonable people of goodwill, including pro-life Americans of every faith, disagree: how best to fight international terrorism, how to restore economic growth and prosperity, how to distribute the tax burden and reduce poverty, etc.
But on abortion, there is a profound difference of moral principle, not just prudence. These questions reveal the character and judgment of each man. Barack Obama is deeply committed to the belief that members of an entire class of human beings have no rights that others must respect. Across the spectrum of pro-life concerns for the unborn, he would deny these small and vulnerable members of the human family the basic protection of the laws. Over the next four to eight years, as many as five or even six U.S. Supreme Court justices could retire. Obama enthusiastically supports Roe v. Wade and would appoint judges who would protect that morally and constitutionally disastrous decision and even expand its scope. Indeed, in an interview in Glamour magazine, he made it clear that he would apply a litmus test for Supreme Court nominations: jurists who do not support Roe will not be considered for appointment by Obama. John McCain, by contrast, opposes Roe and would appoint judges likely to overturn it. This would not make abortion illegal, but it would return the issue to the forums of democratic deliberation, where pro-life Americans could engage in a fair debate to persuade fellow citizens that killing the unborn is no way to address the problems of pregnant women in need.
In the end, the efforts of Obama's apologists to depict their man as the true pro-life candidate that Evangelicals and Catholics may and even should vote for, doesn't even amount to a nice try. Voting for the most extreme pro-abortion political candidate in American history is not the way to save unborn babies.
Robert P. George is McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and Director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton University. He is a member of the President's Council on Bioethics and previously served on the United States Commission on Civil Rights. He sits on the editorial board of Public Discourse.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
Saturday, October 18, 2008
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Thursday, October 09, 2008
Monday, October 06, 2008
Sunday, October 05, 2008
Here is a link to a photo sharing site for Brad & Mandy Tucker Wedding:
(Create your own User Name)
Please use this link and password to share and upload YOUR photos from Brad & Mandy Tucker Wedding. (at Rachel's request)...and mine :-)