Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

The Life of Julia: the Democrat push for more dependence on government

Here is an interesting post from Stuart Scheiderman about the Democrat’s latest ad campaign, “the Life of Julia”.

Excerpt: (links removed)

What were they thinking? What was the crack Obama re-election campaign thinking when they launched their slideshow about “The Life of Julia”?

How is it possible that highly skilled political operatives could have descended into such ham-handed manipulation?

Have their minds been infiltrated and colonized by Republican gremlins? Or were they just trying to provide fodder for the conservative commentariat?

If the latter, they have succeeded beyond their dreams.

James Taranto describes the unfolding story of Julia:

Julia, who has no face, is depicted at various ages from 3 through 67, enjoying the benefits of various Obama-backed welfare-state programs.

As a toddler, she’s in a head-start program. Skip ahead to 17, and she’s enrolled at a Race to the Top high school. Her 20s are very active: She gets surgery and free birth control through ObamaCare regulations, files a lawsuit under the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, and pays off her student loans at a low interest rate. We get updates at age 31, 37 and 42–and then the narrative skips ahead 23 years when she enrolls in Medicare. Two years later, she’s on Social Security, at which point she can die at any time.

In its last frame Julia is retiring comfortably on her Social Security payments. Apparently, they are so generous that she does not need to worry about running out of money.

Is this what people on the left think of individuals? That we need to depend on government for success?

Consider this story from the UK about how government doesn’t trust parents to feed their own children but instead insist that schools feed them, paid for through taxes, of course. (H/T Dina)

Excerpt: (links removed)

This defence of free school meals against a posh government which “hates anyone who is not like them” is promoted as a radical stance. But in truth it is shot through with a cloying, Dickens-style pity for poor kids, who, it is presumed, never receive hot food at home and thus must receive it at school. Campaigners are really calling on the authorities to play in loco parentis and to provide less well-off children with nutrition, because apparently their parents are too poor or stupid to do so. So the Children’s Society says free school meals are essential because “poor diets can be prevalent and child obesity is particularly high in low-income families”. Apparently free school meals are often “the only healthy cooked food [poor children] get”. These waifs and strays, who come from “disadvantaged families” whose eating habits “exceed recommended daily sugars and saturated fat intakes”, must have their eyes opened to “healthy food options”, says the Children’s Society.

It seems clear that the passion for free school meals is not driven by serious political thinking but by perverse middle-class fantasies about the “junk” that poor kids get fed at home. Likewise, when the government cut back on free school milk in 2010, commentators and campaigners were aghast, seeming seriously to believe that poor kids would become calcium-deprived, malnourished creatures without that daily third of a pint of milk. As one said, for children who “do not get a balanced diet high in fruit and vegetables and food like fish, milk [in schools] is the only real way of them getting enough calcium”. One expert told the BBC that the reason it’s so important to have milk and hot food in schools is because”the understanding from some parents about nutrition is so poor”.

In short, schools must do what feckless poor parents have allegedly failed to – care for children. The free school meals defenders are not just interested in feeding kids; they want to save them, fantasising that these urchins come from such unhealthy, morally dilapidated homes that it falls to schools to make them good, healthy, upstanding citizens. At least the school dinners crusader Jamie Oliver was a bit more upfront about his obsession with giving poor schoolkids hot meals, arguing that they come from “white trash” families where the parents are “t*ssers” or “*rseh*les” who feed their children “s**t”. Those are the exact same sentiments behind the current fretting over free school meals, even if the lingo is a bit more PC.

Stuart concludes his article on “The Life of Julia” with this:

As you know, Chinese thinkers grant the greatest importance to “face.” Saving face is a vital psychological need. It’s so important that I wrote a book about it.

When the Chinese talk about face they are talking about the public presentation of self. Face is the way you present yourself in public. People know who you are because they identify your face.

Imagine what it would be if you went through your day without having anyone recognize you, without having anyone know your name, without anyone acknowledging your existence. How long before you would think that you had gotten lost in the twilight zone?

Having face means that you belong to the community. Losing face means that you have either lost status within the community or have been expelled from it.

That is Julia’s status, or her lack of status. She has been transformed into what the Obama campaign wants her to become, a parasite that depends entirely on government support and whose most significant relationships are with the government agencies who are trying to buy her vote.

By the way, what do you call a woman who has been stripped of her name and her dignity, and who allows herself to be sold to the highest bidder?

That’s how socialists view the people who pay them: as incompetent fools in need of micromanagement, so that you everyone will be equal – equally dependent on the government and indistinguishable. While you were completing your double major in economics and physics, they were majoring in feminist theory, race theory and queery theory – learning how their attitudes were better than yours. You learned how to be self-sufficient. They learned how to think that you are stupid and evil.

Your job is just to make money so that they can spend it on you to help you and your children to have the right views – their views. Even though their views have no practical value.  They learned that they should be telling you where you should work, how much of your money you should keep, and how the money you earn should be spent. Not just the tax money they take from you, but the money you keep. They think they should decide how far you can drive, how much you can heat or cool your house, what food you can eat, and how much health care you are allowed to buy. And so on. That’s the Democrat party.

Filed under: Commentary, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Alberta judge rules that it is legal to disagree with homosexuality

Political map of Canada

Political map of Canada

Good news in Alberta.

Excerpt:

Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Paul Jeffrey has dismissed a Crown appeal of a decision from a lower court that acquitted Bill Whatcott of trespassing charges for distributing “Truth about homosexuality” pamphlets at the University of Calgary in 2008.

On Friday, March 30, Jeffrey upheld the November 2011 ruling by provincial court Judge John D. Bascom that stated the University of Calgary infringed on Whatcott’s Charter rights to freedom of expression when campus security arrested and detained him for distributing a pamphlet that addressed the “harmful consequences” of homosexuality.

The university had argued that the Charter only applied to “government actors and government actions,” not to the university itself since it was a private entity.

Bascom ruled, however, that the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms applies to the University of Calgary since “the University is not a Charter free zone,” in that it carried out “specific” governmental work by providing post-secondary education to the public in Alberta, making its actions subject to scrutiny under the Charter.

“Mr. Whatcott entered the university property with a purpose to distribute his literature to students, staff and public,” said the judge, adding, “His activity was peaceful and presented no harm to the university structures or those who frequented the campus. … Although Mr. Whatcott’s pamphlet is not scholarly, freedom of speech is not limited to academic works.”

Bascom concluded that “the means used by campus security halted Mr. Whatcott’s distribution of these flyers and violated his right of free expression.”

The judge also lifted the University’s ban against Whatcott that would have indefinitely prohibited him from setting foot on the campus again, stating that the ban was “arbitrary and unfair.”

Do you all remember that the University of Calgary is one of the ones that harassed pro-lifers with armed policemen? That’s still better than Carleton University, which actually had pro-lifers arrested by armed policemen.

This Alberta ruling dovetails nicely with a 2010 ruling from the province of Saskatchewan:

In 2010 Whatcott won an appeal in Saskatchewan when Justice Darla Hunter of Saskatchewan’s Court of Appeal overturned a 2006 Saskatchewan Human Rights Tribunal ruling that found him guilty of violating the province’s human rights code by publicly criticizing homosexuality through a series of flyers he distributed in Saskatoon and Regina in 2001 and 2002.

The tribunal had ordered Whatcott to pay $17,500 and imposed a “lifetime” ban on his freedom to publicly criticize homosexuality.

In her decision Justice Hunter ruled that Whatcott did not violate section 14(1)(b) of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Code by distributing flyers to oppose the teaching of homosexuality in Saskatoon’s public schools.

“It is acceptable, in a democracy, for individuals to comment on the morality of another’s behaviour. … Anything that limits debate on the morality of behaviour is an intrusion on the right to freedom of expression,” Justice Hunter had remarked.

Alberta and Saskatchewan are the two most conservative provinces in Canada. Let’s hope that other provinces move in the same direction.

Filed under: News, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Paul Ryan explains why Republicans are doing what they promised to do

Rep. Paul Ryan - GOP Ideas Man

Rep. Paul Ryan - GOP Ideas Man

Here’s the video from The Blog Prof.

Paul Ryan is going to do it because he said he would do it.

If you would like to understand what consumer-driven health care is, read this post from the Heritage Foundation.

Excerpt:

If policymakers are serious about real patient-centered, consumer-driven health care reform, they should ensure that their legislative proposals embody six key principles:

  • Individuals are the key decision makers in the health care system. This would be a major departure from conventional third-party pay­ment arrangements that dominate today’s health care financing in both the public and the private sectors. In a normal market based on personal choice and free-market competition, consumers drive the system.
  • Individuals buy and own their own health insurance coverage. In a normal market, when individuals exchange money for a good or service, they acquire a property right in that good or ser­vice, but in today’s system, individuals and families rarely have property rights in their health insur­ance coverage. The policy is owned and controlled by a third party, either their employers or govern­ment officials. In a reformed system, individuals would own their health insurance, just as they own virtually every other type of insurance in virtually every other sector of the economy.
  • Individuals choose their own health insur­ance coverage. Individuals, not employers or government officials, would choose the health care coverage and level of coverage that they think best. In a normal market, the primacy of consumer choice is the rule, not the exception.
  • Individuals have a wide range of coverage choices. Suppliers of medical goods and ser­vices, including health plans, could freely enter and exit the health care market.
  • Prices are transparent. As in a normal market, individuals as consumers would actually know the prices of the health insurance plan or the medical goods and services that they are buying. This would help them to compare the value that they receive for their money.
  • Individuals have the periodic opportunity to change health coverage. In a consumer-driven health insurance market, individuals would have the ability to pick a new health plan on predict­able terms. They would not be locked into past decisions and deprived of the opportunity to make future choices.

And if you’re looking for a nice short podcast on consumer-driven health care, go right here.

If you want a book on this, you can get Regina Hertzlinger’s book (interview here), although I read it, and I found it filled with too many case studies and stories and not enough policy analysis.

UPDATE:

More Paul Ryan: (H/T Hyscience)

And some Michele Bachmann: (H/T Gateway Pundit)

And the House votes to repeal Obamacare, with 3 Democrats joining the Republicans, and no Republicans joining the Democrats.

Related posts

Filed under: News, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

A great article that explains what is at stake with “net neutrality”

From the American Spectator. (H/T ECM)

Excerpt:

Yet, without compelling reason, law or even politics on their side, on December 21, on a 3-2 party line vote, the FCC voted to impose its “net neutrality” rules on the Internet. What net neutrality means is that the government now has the power to decide how ISPs and broadband operators manage the access they provide to the Internet. It is as if the government decided to regulate how FedEx delivers its overnight mail, and what routes and what vehicles they use.

The FCC starts out by proclaiming that its net neutrality rules are just meant to ensure equal access by all to the Web. But as George Orwell showed us, that is how socialism started out too, until we later discovered that some were more equal than others. Once the founding principle is laid for government regulation and control, then that power can be used to regulate and control access to the Internet “in the public interest.” In English translation, that means in the special interest of the Ruling Class. There are precedents in China and Iran for how that has worked out in practice.

Dissenting FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell explained further in the Wall Street Journal on December 20 why the FCC’s net neutrality regulation makes no sense:

Nothing is broken and needs fixing, however. The Internet has been open and freedom-enhancing since it was spun off from a government research project in the early 1990s. Its nature as a diffuse and dynamic global network of networks defies top-down authority. Ample laws to protect consumers already exist. Furthermore, the Obama Justice Department and the European Commission both decided this year that net neutrality regulation was unnecessary and might deter investment in next-generation Internet technology and infrastructure.

But what I have learned in life is that when something doesn’t make sense, that means there is something else behind it that people are trying to hide.

And that is exactly what we have here. For what is behind the FCC’s net neutrality crusade is reflected by an organization calling itself Free Press. That is an Orwellian title in this case, because what Free Press is for is the opposite of a free press. Free Press is one of those pseudo-Marxist front groups that Barack Obama has always traveled with so easily throughout his life. It is a grown-up, slick, sophisticated version of those campus radicals who shout down college speakers with whom they don’t agree.

That is what Free Press is after with its “net neutrality” regulation. It is laying the groundwork for government control of the Internet. Once that it is established, it will be able to shout down websites with which it doesn’t agree, if not shut them out altogether.

The entering wedge for net neutrality so far is not public freedom to access and navigate the Internet, which no one can credibly claim is not currently as free as could be. The entering wedge for now is use of Internet access and broadband services by competing commercial concerns like Netflix and YouTube, which consume huge proportions of bandwidth that can consequently interfere with use by consumers and others.

The problem has not become unmanageable yet, but threatens to be. The concern is that broadband operators will limit use of their service by other commercial operations that are effectively bandwidth hogs, to preserve the viability of their service for the general public, which is exactly what they should do. The supposed purpose of net neutrality regulation so far is to prevent broadband operators from doing this.

The solution is for broadband operators to charge heavier commercial users of their service heavier fees to cover the costs. Those heavier fees can then be used to build even bigger and better broadband and Cyberspace access, sufficient to fully accommodate even the heaviest commercial broadband users.

But that [solution] doesn’t involve the expanded government power that Obama’s FCC and net neut advocates like Free Press are after. So it is not on the table as the answer. Government takeover is the only answer they will consider, just as in health care. But if the government is going to take control over the big investment bucks broadband providers put in the ground or into orbit, America is not going to get the Internet investment and access it needs. That is why America’s Internet access is already lagging behind other countries.

[...]This FCC episode raises a broader question about the Obama Administration in the next two years. Because what we see here is what we are already seeing elsewhere in the Administration as well, from HHS Secretary Sebelius’s takeover of health insurance, to the EPA’s takeover of the economy based on global warming fantasies. That broader question is: Are we going to be governed by democracy and the rule of law in America, or not?

Worth reading. I am trying to write about the problems in Obamacare and with the EPA raising energy costs on American consumers and businesses. But taking over the Internet could be an even bigger disaster if the government can prevent the truth about what they are doing from being reported.

Filed under: Commentary, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

What is natural law and why do conservatives believe in it?

Bill Whittle has posted part 4 of his excellent series on what conservatives believe.

Today’s episode is on natural law and the rule of law.

Here are the previous parts:

This is wonderful for Christians to watch. When you watch them, think about how your life goals are much easier with these policies as opposed the policies in North Korea or Cuba. Your liberties, including your precious religious liberty, all hangs on these ideas. You cannot conduct a Christian life if you are taxed too much, or if the government indoctrinates your children in government-run schools, or if you cannot even afford books on apologetics and theology because you have no money left over after buying food. Think about your Christian life as an enterprise – what do you need from the government, the courts and the private sector in order to succeed?

Filed under: Videos, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Wintery Tweets

Click to see recent visitors

  Visitors Online Now

Page views since 1/30/09

  • 4,232,366 hits

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,972 other followers

Archives

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,972 other followers

%d bloggers like this: