News for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited government, free markets, liberty & individual freedom. All content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for this site - no paid ads accepted - no payments for articles. Fair Use doctrine is posted & used. Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru] - firstname.lastname@example.org (Pub. Since July, 2006)Home Page
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics
is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato
Saturday, April 21, 2007
Big Foot, Unicorns, and Pro-Trade Democrats Are they fantasies after all?
By Daniel Ikenson, Assoc. Director, Center for Trade Policy Studies, Cato Institute: Democratic leaders have been asserting that, despite the hostile rhetoric of their rank and file, they view trade openness and engagement as indispensable to U.S. economic and security objectives. That with some accommodation of Democratic priorities on labor and environmental issues, the administration and Congress can work together to advance a bipartisan trade agenda. The credibility of those assertions is about to be tested. The recently concluded but yet-to-be ratified U.S.-Korea Free Trade Agreement will reveal whether the Democratic congressional leadership can be trusted to continue the time-tested tradition of promoting economic growth through liberalized trade. South Korea is one of the fastest growing markets for U.S. exports, the seventh-largest U.S. trade partner, and the world’s tenth-largest economy. Its citizens enjoy a per-capita income of $24,000, placing them among the world’s richest. A free-trade agreement would increase U.S. national income by an estimated $17 billion to $43 billion per year.
But already opposition is building among Democrats, despite the fact that labor and the environment are virtual non-issues. ... Spearheading the opposition is House Ways and Means subcommittee on trade chairman, Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI). Levin’s opposition is predicated on the agreement’s failure to incorporate an absurd proposal that he, House Ways and Means chairman Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY), and 13 other members - hailing mostly from Michigan - foisted upon the U.S. trade representative in the waning weeks of the negotiations. Over the past couple of years, U.S. exports to Korea have been growing fast, while U.S. imports from Korea have been falling. U.S. goods exports to Korea increased by over 23 percent, to $32.5 billion in 2006 from $26.4 billion in 2004. During the same period, U.S. goods imports from Korea declined to $44.7 billion from $45.0 billion. On a per capita basis, Koreans are already buying far more from Americans than the other way around. American businesses are doing quite well in the Korean market. ... Now is the time for pro-trade Democrats to prove that they exist. . . . [Read More] Tags:Daniel Ikenson, Democrats, Free Trade, South KoreaTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Promises Made: “Adios” to PAYGO Democrat Position: Good for America Unless It's Bad for Democrats
by Rep. John Boozman Press Office: It took 105 days, but PAYGO is now not worth the paper it was written on. Remember last month when the Democrat Leadership pulled the DC Voting bill off the floor after Republicans offered an amendment to repeal the DC gun ownership ban? (Never mind that it would have restored the 2nd Amendment rights to people who Democrats said demanded the right to vote.) The fact that parts of the bill came under the PAYGO rules allowed the GOP to amend the bill.
... In order to prevent the GOP from amending the bill, House Democrats have waived the PAYGO rules, ... much heralded by Democrats in last year’s campaign.... Normally, the rules of the House of Representatives would require that the bill be subject to a PAYGO point of order on the House floor. However, the Democrats are eliminating the possibility for Members of Congress to question their waiving of PAYGO in order to pass the bill.
Rep. Boozman voted for PAYGO, ... with a bipartisan majority ... “as a common-sense step to require the House of Representatives to pay-as-we-go when it comes to money matters ... The American people demanded we begin down the road to fiscal responsibility, and this rule is a good first step.” . . . Some of the rhetoric about PAYGO spouted by members of the Democrat Leadership:
Speaker Nancy Pelosi: “After years of historic deficits, this new Congress will commit itself to a higher standard: pay as you go, no new deficit spending. Our new America will provide unlimited opportunity for future generations, not burden them with mountains of debt.”
Majority Leader Steny Hoyer: “Democrats propose a new direction on the economy that includes a commitment to fiscal discipline. We would restore common sense “pay as you go” rules that say any increase in spending or decrease in revenue, such as tax cuts, must be offset by decreases in spending elsewhere or increases in revenue. Democrats believe that fiscal responsibility will help put America back on the right track”
Ways & Means Chairman Charlie Rangel: “It’s not good for me to have pay-go, but it’s good for the country. At this point, nobody . . . has convinced me that there should be exemptions from pay-go.”
Democrat Caucus Chairman Rahm Emanuel: “I worked for an administration that had pay-as-you-go rules. It created discipline not just for Republicans, not just for Democrats. For the government. For the American people’s money.”
The new Democrat position on PAYGO:Good for America unless it’s bad for Democrats.See Also:House Violates Constitution ... Tags:Democrats, John Boozman, PAYGO, U.S. House, US Congress
New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch (D) Supports Civil Unions
FRC: Despite the best efforts of pro-family groups, the New Hampshire state senate is moving forward quickly with its political agenda to legalize civil unions. According to a web survey by the Manchester Union Leader, a majority of residents (53.5%) expressed their opposition to the bill. In the face of growing statewide resistance, Gov. John Lynch (D) yesterday announced his intent to sign the legislation should it pass the senate in next week's vote. "I believe it is a matter of... preventing discrimination," Lynch told reporters. Asked why he opposes same-sex "marriage" but supports civil unions, he said, "I still think marriage is between a man and a woman." In an effort to appease both sides, the governor is deliberately misleading voters.
The reality is, civil unions are same-sex "marriage." The only difference between the two is the name. While the term "civil union" may seem more palatable, make no mistake--this legislation confers all of the rights and legal standing to homosexual couples that marriage does. If the senate succeeds, the Granite State would become the fourth to approve civil unions--but the first to do so without waging an initial challenge over same-sex "marriage" in the courts. A defeat in New Hampshire would be a significant setback for the sanctity of marriage in New England, which already counts Massachusetts, Vermont, New Jersey, and Connecticut among its disappointments. See also:Gov. Lynch will sign civil unions bill&Bay State to Impose Same-Sex ‘Marriage’ on Nation Tags:civil unions, FRC, homosexual activism, New Hampshire
House Violates Constitution & Votes to give D.C. a seat Three Arkansas Congressmen Display Ignorance of the Constitution
Washington Times: The House yesterday approved congressional voting rights for the District of Columbia, granting the D.C. delegate a vote for the first time in the nation's history and adding a seat in Utah to increase the size of the chamber to 437 members. In a 241-177 vote on H.R. 1433, the House approved a bill that Democrats call a long-awaited victory for 600,000 District residents and many Republicans derided as "trampling on the Constitution" . . . most Republicans and the Bush administration argue the bill is unconstitutional because the Constitution says that Congress members must be elected "by the people of the several states." "The District of Columbia is a federal city and not a state," said Rep. Patrick T. McHenry, North Carolina Republican. "The new Democratic majority is trying to pad their numbers on the floor." Mr. McHenry and others say a fairer plan would give portions of the largely Democratic District back to neighboring Maryland. . . . [Read More] [Note: Previously, sections of the District of Columbia provided by Virginia were returned to Virginia.] See also:No D.C. Voting Rights! - Posting and Comments
ARRA Comment:What part of the Constitution can we rely on or now even violate? Who gets to decide? It is disappointing that three of our Arkansas' Congressional delegation voted to violate the U.S. Constitution to grant Washington D.C. a voting representative. This action is clearly a violation as evidenced by both the constitution and by previous actions taken by the Congress. They understood the constitutional limitation and offered an amendment to the constitution for a voting representative which defeated by the States. Again, D.C. is not a State. It was to have no representation. Congress could return parts of D.C. to the contributing states who provided the land for the District of Columbia. Jurisdiction over land given by Virginia has already been returned to them. Land that is primarily residential and commercial and is property given by Maryland could be and probably should be returned to Maryland. The three Arkansans who voted to violate the constitution were Marion Berry, Vic Snyder and Mike Ross! Voting with the majority this time does not vindicate or assuage their actions. Tags:Arkansas, constitution, D.C., Marion Berry, Mike Ross, Vic Snyder, voting, voting rights
McCain Rejection Rate Spikes; Clinton, Giuliani Still Lead
by Gary Langer at ABC News: ABC News/Washington Post poll finds McCain matches Clinton's voter rejection, Giuliani loses ground but stays ahead. Voter rejection of Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., the candidate who's most staunchly backed the Iraq War, has spiked in the last year, to the point where nearly half of Americans -- including a quarter of Republicans -- say they definitely would not support him for president . . .
Giuliani is supported by 33% of leaned Republicans in this survey, down from 44% in February and back to where he was in January. Part (but not all) of that is because of the inclusion of possible candidate Fred Thompson, a former senator and current television actor; removing Thompson from the equation, Giuliani has 37% support. With Thompson included, McCain gets 21% support, the same as in February; Romney, 9%; Thompson, 9%; and Newt Gingrich (who, like Thompson, has not announced his candidacy) 6%, down from 15%. Others are in the lower single digits.
For the Democrats, support levels are very similar in this poll to what they were in February. Thirty-seven percent support among leaned Democrats for Clinton, 20% for Obama, 17% for Al Gore (not an announced candidate) and 14% for Edwards, with others in single digits. With Gore excluded, it's 41% for Clinton, 25% for Obama and 17% for Edwards, again very similar to the last ABC/Post poll. . . . This ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted by telephone April 12-15, 2007, among a random national sample of 1,141 adults, including an oversample of African-Americans. The results from the full survey have a three-point error margin. [Read More]ARRA Comment: As reported by the liberal ABC News.Tags:ABC News, John Mccain, online polls, presidential candidate, Rudy Giuliani, Survey, Washington PostTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Aesop's Fables or Aesopica refers to a collection of fables credited to Aesop (620–560 BC), a story-teller who lived in Ancient Greece. Aesop's Fables have become a blanket term for collections of brief fables, usually involving personified animals. The fables remain a popular choice for moral education. With everything going on today by today's liberals it is good to reflect on some adapted versions of Aesop's Fable about "the Ant and the Grasshopper."
OLD ADAPTED VERSION: The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed. The grasshopper has no food or shelter, so he dies out in the cold. MORAL OF THE STORY: Be responsible for yourself!
MODERN VERSION: The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others are cold and starving.
CBS, NBC, PBS, CNN, and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food. America is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can this be, that in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so? Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper, and everybody cries when they sing, "It's Not Easy Being Green."
Jesse Jackson stages a demonstration in front of the ant's house where the news stations film the group singing, "We shall overcome." Jesse then has the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper's sake. Nancy Pelosi & John Kerry exclaim in an interview with Larry King that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and both call for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his fair share.
Finally, the EEOC drafts the Economic Equity and Anti-Grasshopper Act retroactive to the beginning of the summer. The ant is fined for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the government. Hillary gets her old law firm to represent the grasshopper in a defamation suit against the ant, and the case is tried before a panel of federal judges that Bill Clinton appointed from a list of single-parent welfare recipients.
The ant loses the case. The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the ant's food while the government house he is in, which just happens to be the ant's old house, crumbles around him because he doesn't maintain it. The ant has disappeared in the snow. The grasshopper is found dead in a drug related incident and the house, now abandoned, is taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorize the once peaceful neighborhood. MORAL OF THE STORY: Be careful how you vote!
Tags:Aesop's Fables, liberalism, political humor, The Ant and the GrasshopperTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The Other King of Pork -- AR Representative Marion Berry
by Andrew Roth: Congressman Marion Berry (D-AR) promises more pork barrel spending now that the Democrats are in charge of Congress. This is no surprise. Last year, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette wrote, "Arkansas’ Rep. Marion Berry would like to be known as the king of pork. “Nothing would please me more,” he says."
Berry addressed a local group and started talking about earmarks. Here's the key series of quotes, as reported by Dewitt Era-Enterprise reporter Frank Scott:
“I think that by the time [the appropriation bills] get on his desk he [Bush] will be so slap-happy that he will sign it,” Berry said.
In answer to a question from Arkansas County Judge Glenn “Sonny” Cox, Berry said that he had put a request for $4 million for an overpass over the railroad tracks on Park Street (U.S. 165) in Stuttgart in the budget.
Berry also used the opportunity to define “earmarks,” projects put into the budget by representatives and senators to benefit portions of their local constituencies. Many media outlets have blamed the proliferation of these earmarks for at least part of the soaring budget deficits in recent years.
“The big papers are hung up on earmarks,” Berry told the local leaders. “They see a bypass in Stuttgart as a waste of money. They overlook the fact that this administration earmarks everything.”
The feeling of members of Congress, Berry said, “is that we know more about how money should be spent in our districts than the Department of Transportation.
Which of course raises an interesting question for the Honorable Gentleman from Arkansas: If you know so much about where federal dollars should be spent, why don't you come out from behind those closed doors and share your expertise with the rest of us who get to pay for it? Tags:Arkansas, Democrat, earmarks, U.S., representative, Marion Berry, pork, pork-barrel spenders, U.S. House
Defending ourselves: the constitutional strategy Lessons from Virginia Tech shootings
by Alan Keyes: Right now, the American people are understandably caught up in the emotional reaction to the horrifying events at Virginia Tech University. Leftist pols and media manipulators around the country and the world fanatically clamor that we should round up the usual "suspects" -- that is, the guns responsible for all this violence. They want to distract us from the issues of human responsibility that are at its core. The responsibility of the killer. The responsibility of the police and university officials. The responsibility of gun-ban advocates whose success at Virginia Tech made certain that no one in Norris Hall was armed to interrupt the killer's methodical spree by forcing him to defend himself, or slow down in fear of his own life. . . . [Read more]
Professional fallacy: I can already hear the chorus of objections from people who have been duped into believing that the defense of a free society can be left to professionals. They reject the constitutional concept of the militia because in the end they do not believe that people have the capacity to govern themselves. They want us to treat firearms the way peasants treated the weapons of the medieval era, as things reserved for the use of a privileged few on whom everyone else had to rely for their safety, and who of course ultimately defined the limits of their freedom.
The anti-gun crowd seeks to establish a modern version of this lordly domination, a kind of bureaucratic feudalism, in place of the republican self-government established by our Constitution. Just as the income tax eliminates the people's control of its own resources, they want a general gun ban to eliminate the people's capacity to defend itself. They will pretend that our safety requires it, even though our tragic experience proves just the opposite.
The truth is, we can have both safety and liberty if we return to the common sense concepts of our Constitution, and step forward to resume our responsibility as a people for the safety and defense of the communities in which we live. The answer is not gun control, but self-government, self-defense, and self-control. We must act to live as free people, else like sheep for the slaughter, we will die, and freedom with us. Tags:Alan Keyes, gun control, Virgina TechTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Public Minnesota College to Install Foot-Washing Basins for Muslim Students
FoxNews: Summary of reported info - A Minneapolis College has banned Christian traditions like Christmas music has no such qualms about promoting Islam. According to the Star Tribune, the Minneapolis Community and Technical College plans to use taxpayer funds to install special (daily prayer preparation) facilities for the "ritual foot-washing" of Muslim students. Even ACLU spokesmen find the school's policies on religion inconsistent." The Constitution draws a line between church and state, but the line is one of neutrality, not hostility," said the group's director of legal affairs. This is not the first religious controversy to hit Minneapolis. Last year, Muslim cabbies began refusing fares for people carrying liquor, citing religious reasons. But college president Phil Davis says the two accommodations are very different. The foot washing facilities are not about religion, they are about customer service and public safety. Davis points out if there are no facilities, Muslim students will have to wash their feet in bathroom sinks which he says is not sanitary and dangerous for the students. [Read More]
Comment: Obviously, the school's definition of religious tolerance is selective. Surely if evangelicals had requested a baptismal font--let alone one funded by the state--they would have been laughed out of the building. Tags:Christianity, Minnesota, Muslim, College Republicans, foot washing
Liberals In Their Own Words about Supreme Court Partial Birth Abortion Decision
FRC: While pro-lifers celebrated the Supreme Court victory on partial-birth abortion, the mood on Capitol Hill was far less jubilant. House and Senate leaders seem perturbed that such a devastating blow to abortion was dealt on their watch. For liberal lawmakers, who have become accustomed to waging--and winning--their battles in activist courts, this news came as a shock. Such a shock, that leaders like Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV) seemed to momentarily forget what their position on the issue avowedly is. Despite voting for a partial-birth abortion ban every time it came up in Congress, Reid commented yesterday, "I would only say that this is the only decision a lot of us wish that Alito weren't there and O'Connor were there." Since Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) was the only Illinois legislator to vote against the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act in 2003 (a vote deemed so "extreme" that even NARAL refused to score it), few were surprised that he announced his displeasure with the PBA ruling. Nor did we need guess what Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) would say. "It is precisely this erosion of our constitutional rights that I warned against when I opposed the nominations of Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito." See also:Candidates split along party lines on ruling Tags:Barack Obama, Democrats, FRC, Harry Reid, Hillary Clinton, liberal, partial birth abortion, US Supreme CourtTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Presidential Candidate Mike Huckabee Reaches Out to Bloggers
Former Governor Mike Huckabee (AR) and Republican presidential candidate hit the ground running this morning in Manchester, New Hampshire. The former governor started a day of campaigning with a five kilometer run with supporters in downtown Manchester. Huckabee is in New Hampshire on a two-day campaign trip, where he is meeting with Republican supporters and local voters at numerous public community events throughout the state.
In the afternoon, Huckabee and Debra Vanderbeek, New Hampshire chairman of Huckabee for President, hosted a conference call with bloggers. This was his second conference call for bloggers from campaign events. Bloggers and editors were able to login using a pre-announced phone number.
Huckabee provided insights into his daily events and identified that he is experiencing a wonderful response in New Hampshire. The citizens of New Hampshire surprised him as being very much like his fellow Arkansans who have a close relationship with their elected officials and expect their candidates to come to public events to speak. He said it was "retail politics" and you had to be prepared to "know how to ask" voters what is important to them and them be open to discuss issues with them one on one.
Huckabee then opened discussions with bloggers who asked varied questions. Huckabee was glad to hear from fellow Arkansas Republican, Dr. Bill Smith, editor of the ARRA Blog. Huckabee shared the common themes existing between voters in Arkansas and New Hampshire. Another blogger asked him about the impact of the Ethics on the last elections and its perceived effect on the 2008 election. Huckabee discussed how ethics needs to be an issue in the election. He said the "culture of greed" that existed in prior years with Enron and WorldCom executives taking $10million in bonuses while employees lost their pensions cannot be repeated. He also identified that Republicans participating in congressional pork was one of the reasons Republicans lost their majority in the last election.
Bloggers wishing to participate in future Conference Calls for Bloggers should contact one of the following Media Contacts: Kirsten Fedewa, 202-365-6936, or Alice Stewart, 501-324-2008. Tags:bloggers, GOP, Mike Huckabee, New Hampshire, presidential candidate, RepublicanTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Baker Stepping Down as Chair of the Arkansas GOP Lamoureux announces he will seek position
by Jon Gilmore, Communications Director (RPA): State Senator Gilbert Baker (R-Conway) announced today that he will be stepping down as Chair of the Republican Party of Arkansas (RPA) upon the election of a new Chair. Baker said, “I was always committed to one term as Chair to help complete the reforms relating to finances and party rules begun by the late Win Rockefeller”.
Baker was elected Chair Dec. 5, 2005, and followed the late Lieutenant Governor Rockefeller, in that position. Baker was elected to the Arkansas State Senate in 2000 and is currently serving in his seventh year. During Baker’s tenure as Chair, the RPA saw contributions of over $2.5 million, volunteer contacts of one million individuals and registered ten thousand new voters. According to Baker, “Following the 2006 election cycle, I was asked by many to stay on for continuity and to help provide stability during a very challenging time for the RPA. The party will now be better served by someone who can give more time and energy to the organization. I believe there are individuals, willing and qualified, to lead our Party successfully through the 2008 election cycle.” A special election for the Chair of the RPA will be called in the next few weeks.
By Bill Smith, ARRA Editorial: At the Search County Lincoln Day Dinner on Mar. 24, 2007, State Rep. Michael (Mike) Lamoureux (R-Russellville, Dist 86 & House Minority Leader) spoke on the "insider View" of the legislative process. He also announced that he would seek the Chair of the Republican Party of Arkansas when Sen. Baker steps down.
Lamaoureux shared that Republicans need to work, promote, and elect from the County Committee level to all levels of city, county and state government "true" Republican grounded first on the principles of the Republican Party and second who can to work effectively even when out numbered on issues. He identified that we must make it clear that electing conservative democrats is not benefiting the conservative values of Arkansans. When conservative democrats are elected, they make the Democrats party the majority and give power to the liberal faction of the Democrat Party in Arkansas that controls and advances the liberal agenda of the National Democrats in Arkansas. He acknowledged that we cannot continue ignore the consequences and impact of illegal immigration in Arkansas. He noted that courses are currently being taught in Spanish in some Arkansas school systems and advocated that all public education courses (except foreign language courses) should be taught in English.
Tags:Arkansas Republican Party, Mike Lamoureux, RPATo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Arkansas house GOP leader hails Supreme Court ruling upholding the ban against partial-birth abortions.
by Rep. Johnny Key, Republican Leader Arkansas Republican Caucus:I join conservatives everywhere in hailing today's Supreme Court ruling upholding the ban against partial-birth abortions. Not only is this the correct ruling, it is in touch with the overwhelming majority of Americans that believe partial-birth abortion is reprehensible and must be stopped.
Unfortunately, by their comments today opposing this landmark ruling, Democrat presidential contenders such as Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and John Edwards have demonstrated how far out of touch they are with the American people. There is now no doubt that if elected President, these candidates would appoint justices like Ruth Bader Ginsburg who refuse to protect innocent life, even in cases as outrageous as partial-birth abortion. "I could not disagree more strongly with today's Supreme Court decision,” Edwards said. “The ban upheld by the Court is an ill-considered and sweeping prohibition that does not even take account for serious threats to the health of individual women.”
Obama stated that he strongly disagrees with the ruling “which dramatically departs from previous precedents safeguarding the health of pregnant women.” “This ruling signals an alarming willingness on the part of the conservative majority to disregard its prior rulings respecting a woman’s medical concerns and the very personal decisions between a doctor and patient,” Obama said.
"This decision marks a dramatic departure from four decades of Supreme Court rulings that upheld a woman's right to choose and recognized the importance of women's health,” said Clinton. “This issue is complex and highly personal; the rights and lives of women must be taken into account.”
These comments demonstrate how top-tier Democrat presidential candidates hide behind the far left’s false arguments about the “health of the mother” and further emphasize how they are out of touch with main stream Americans.Tags:abortion, Arkansas Republican Caucus, Democrats, Johnny Key, partial birth abortion, Republican, US Supreme CourtTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Supreme Court Upholds Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act Arkansas U.S. Congressman John Boozman Pleased
FoxNews: The Supreme Court upheld the nationwide ban on a controversial abortion procedure Wednesday, handing abortion opponents the long-awaited victory they expected from a more conservative bench. The 5-4 ruling said the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act that Congress passed and President Bush signed into law in 2003 does not violate a woman's constitutional right to an abortion. Click to read the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act.
The opponents of the act "have not demonstrated that the Act would be unconstitutional in a large fraction of relevant cases," Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote in the majority opinion. The decision pitted the court's conservatives against its liberals, with President Bush's two appointees, Chief Justice John Roberts and Justice Samuel Alito, siding with the majority. Justices Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia also were in the majority. It was the first time the court banned a specific procedure in a case over how — not whether — to perform an abortion. . . . The outcome is likely to spur efforts at the state level to place more restrictions on abortions. More than 1 million abortions are performed in the United States each year, according to recent statistics. Nearly 90 percent of those occur in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, and are not affected by Wednesday's ruling. . . . "Today's decision is alarming," Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote in dissent. She said the ruling "refuses to take ... seriously" previous Supreme Court decisions on abortion. . . . [Read More] Family Research Council (FRC): We applaud the U.S. Supreme Court's decision today upholding Congress's statute that ends the bloodshed of the unborn by the horrific partial-birth abortion procedure. . . . We insist that this matter should not be in the Court, for it is not in the Constitution that was written by our Founders. However, at least now the Court is beginning to grant that the people, through their elected representatives, have a say in this matter. Writing for the majority, Justice Anthony Kennedy (joined by Chief Justice John Roberts, and Justices Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas, and Antonin Scalia) upheld a principle that was established in Planned Parenthood v. Casey--the state has a legitimate interest in protecting unborn human life. The opinion also seems to indicate that the Court is rethinking the way in which challenges are brought by the abortion lobby to every statute affecting abortions. For years, the abortion lobby has been able to stop almost all legislation by "facial challenges." Now, perhaps, they will have to prove their case in court, as everyone else has to do. For FRC, this rare gleam of sanity in the abortion debate is a long-awaited triumph, marked by years of hard work on Capitol Hill, in legal briefs, through congressional testimony, and countless publications aimed at educating Americans on the importance of protecting life and helping mothers. Take the "10 For Life Challenge" See Also: Arkansas U.S.Congressman John Boozman: Court made correct decisionTags:abortion, John Boozman, partial birth abortion, Supreme Court Judges, US Supreme CourtTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Hate Crimes bills being heard This Week (HR1592 & S1105)
TVC: The Hate Crimes bill, HR 1592, adds “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” “perceived or actual” for special federal protection under the Commerce Clause, is on the fast track and is to be heard in the Crime subcommittee on Tuesday, April 17, voted on Wednesday, April 18 in subcommittee. Then it will probably go to the full Judiciary Committee the next week. It will be used to establish a legal foundation and framework that will eventually be used to investigate, persecute and prosecute YOU, pastors, business owners and anyone whose actions are based upon the truths found in the Bible concerning homosexuality. Gender identity is the code word for cross-dressers, drag queens, she-males, transsexuals, etc. who would be given special protection so that they have more rights than you do.
FRC: As the Senate prepares to debate the "hate crimes" bill, S. 1105, this week, sponsoring Sens. Ted Kennedy (D-MA.) and Gordon Smith (R-OR) have shamelessly renamed the legislation in "honor" of Matthew Shepard, the slain college student whose tragic and brutal murder shocked the country. In doing so, Smith said, "I believe we'll be more successful." Successful or not, this maneuver cannot transform a bad idea into a good law. In 2004, ABC aired an investigative report that, demonstrated that Matthew Shepard's murder--heinous as it was--was not motivated by "hate" after all. The crime actually began as a robbery attempt within a subculture of illegal drug use to which both Shepard and his killers belonged. The Kennedy-Smith bill, S. 1105, would treat "sexual orientation" and "gender identity" (i.e., cross-dressing and sex-change operations) as "protected classes" and make a federal offense out of a local crime because of the offender's opinions alone. While criminal law treats all violent acts equally, "hate crimes" provisions would also punish the accused for any prejudice the government finds they might have toward the victim. Instead of ending discrimination, this bill helps to create a caste system in American society. Any violent crime reflects negatively on us all, and such crimes warrant swift and certain justice. Additional Resources: - Shepard's name on hate crimes bill- Stop Thought Crimes Laws microsite
Tags:FRC, Hate Crime Bill, House, Senate, TVC, US Congress
A Taxing Problem Democrats Willfully Allowing Family Tax Cuts to Expire
Family Research Council: As bad as paying your debt to Uncle Sam might have been this year, brace yourself for an even more taxing future. The budget that Democrats are currently debating in Congress would mean a large tax increase over the next few years, largely because nothing has been done to make the existing tax cuts, signed by President Bush, permanent. Since the Democrats are willfully allowing the cuts to expire, the Joint Committee on Taxation notes that the marginal income tax rates will rise, meaning that everyone--rich and poor--will shoulder a bigger tax burden in the coming years. By 2011 the marriage penalty will return, the child tax credit will decrease from $1,000 to $500, and the death tax (by which the IRS manages to tax you even after you die) will return with full force. The average tax increase would work out to over $3,000 per person. Unless you enjoyed looking at the "federal income tax withheld" and "amount you owe" lines on your income tax forms, then I would encourage you to contact your senators and representative and let them know before they increase your taxes--again. Take Action Now Contact your elected officials See Also:Congress busy with Easter junkets - your taxes being spent! Tags:Democrats, FRC, increased taxes, taxes
Saturday evening, the Iowa Republican party put on its Annual Lincoln Day Dinner in Des Moines - about a thousand people attended. All but two of the presidential candidates spoke. Tom Tancredo spoke right after dinner and told them that our leaders -- those who have been charged with the responsibility of defending our land, our culture and our sovereignty--refuse to do their jobs. Every generation of Americans must face its test, I told them, a test passed at Valley Forge, on the Normandy beaches, and on Flight 93. Whenever Americans see their country threatened or their flag falling, they act. This is their country; the country they built, that they fought and bled and died for. This is our culture; they need to fight for it. This is our flag; they need to pick it up. This is our country; we need to take it back. That is why I’m running for president.
The New York Times reported that “Tancredo drew some of the loudest applause of the night"! The LA Times reported that “the best-received was Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado, whose combative rhetoric on illegal immigration has defined his campaign. Videos: Part 1 & Part 2 of Event:
Tags:Election 2008, GOP, Iowa, presidential candidate, Republican, Tom Tancredo, videoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Today is tax day - be sure to pay your taxes (see picture)
Tax reminder: Don't forget to pay your taxes....21 million illegal aliens are depending on you and gladly say Muchos gracias!
The fact is, this isn’t funny. The rampant influx of illegal aliens into our land is costing American taxpayers untold millions, and if “amnesty” legislation is passed, you will be required to foot-the-bill even more! You are urged to to “Stop the Invasion” by clicking here: Sign the Petition. We cannot afford to be a sanctuary nation for illegals! Take a stand today by forwarding this message to your friends and family urging them to sign our petition. Tags:illegal aliens, illegal immigration, taxesTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Arkansas Republican Assembly (ARRA): Reports from Virginia Tech indicate that thirty-one, including the gunman, died at Norris Hall and two died at West Ambler Johnston Hall. Fifteen other victims from Norris are being treated at area hospitals. ARRA joins with the millions of families across America in praying for the students, faculty and families affected by these senseless acts of violence. It is in times like these that we should turn to our faith for reassurance. II Corinthians 1:3-5 reminds us, "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. ... "
We join others in "Prayer for the Virginia Tech: Heavenly Father, come with Your peace to the students, faculty and staff at Virginia Tech, and to the greater community of Blacksburg. Calm their fears and bring Your comforting presence. Give wisdom and strength to the administration of the University as they deal with this crisis. Grant healing and comfort to the injured and wisdom to those treating them. Bring Your powerful strength and presence to those those families who will soon hear the sad new that their loved one has been killed. Send Your ministering spirits to heal and restore the community as they seek to recover from this horrendous act of violence. Amen." Tags:Arkansas Republican Assembly, ARRA, prayer, Virgina TechTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
National Passenger Fees & Taxes Supporting Small Arkansas Airports
by Bob Porterfield: The federal gov't has taken billions (B) of dollars from the taxes and fees paid by airline passengers every time they fly and awarded it to small airports used mainly by private pilots and corporate executives. Some of these “general aviation” facilities used the federal dollars - more than $7B over the past decade - for enhancements such as longer runways and passenger terminals aimed at drawing traffic. . . . the money comes with little oversight and at the expense of an increasingly beleaguered air transportation system. “They’re making out like bandits,” said Bob Poole, director of transportation studies at So. CA’s Reason Foundation and author of several studies on air transportation costs. “It’s not only that airline passengers are paying more than their fair share, but they’re being overtaxed to give private jets a free ride.” Passengers pay as many as six separate taxes and fees on a single airline ticket, adding up to more than $104B since 1997 . . .
Small airports in Arkansas with limited or no commercial activity have received more than $48.8 million (M) since 2005 in federal taxes and fees from passengers, according to the review. The Rogers Municipal Airport, which houses corporate jets for the nearby Wal-Mart Stores Inc., headquarters, has collected $9.4M since 2005 - Arkansas’ top recipient of such federal funding among smaller airports. The airport’s fixed base operator - or FBO, a service area for aircraft - is Beaver Lake Aviation, a subsidiary of Wal-Mart Stores Inc., and is home to the Wal-Mart Aviation fleet. And airport officials predict business will continue to grow; they’ve created an $80M master plan that would expand the facility and extend the airport’s 6,011-foot runway. Most of those improvements would be paid for by the Federal Aviation Administration’s Airport Improvement Program (AIP), which is primarily funded by fees from passengers on commercial flights.
Other Arkansas beneficiaries of the AIP offer limited commercial service, such as the airports in El Dorado and Jonesboro. Both airports, which received several million dollars between them, offer daily Mesa Airlines flights. . . . The elimination or reduction of the subsidy isn’t an issue Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), is pushing for, the senator’s office said Friday. Sen. Mark Pryor (D-AR), is a member of the Senate Commerce Committee and will be involved in crafting the FAA’s reauthorization bill. “One of my priorities is to ensure adequate funding is available to maintain and improve our runways, airports and air safety,” Pryor said. “It is my goal to work in a bipartisan manner to provide a practical solution that is fair for consumers and aviation stakeholders, and allows Arkansas to meet its growing transportation demands.”
. . . Mark Cooper of the Washington-based Consumer Federation of America said the key question is whether passengers are paying for something and getting nothing in return.“It costs me more to park my car at National Airport than it costs to park a corporate jet,” he said. . . . A study released in February by the FAA said it cost $2.4B just to provide air traffic control for private and corporate planes in 2005. Yet the industry contributed just $516M in fuel taxes that year. Another $500M annually pays for weather forecasts and other preflight data for private pilots. These contribute to overall air safety, according to Andy Chebula, ... at the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, which represents more than 410,000 pilots and is lobbying heavily for retaining passenger taxes. If private pilots have to start paying for such things themselves, they just won’t bother, Chebula said.
Congress now is considering new approaches to financing the FAA before its funding expires Sept. 30. The House and Senate Aviation subcommittees have been conducting hearings on the topic since February. The FAA wants to scrap many existing passenger taxes and replace them with higher fuel taxes and user fees that would put more of the burden on noncommercial aviation. . . .
Other Arkansas airports receiving AIP funds: Walnut Ridge Regional, $2.8M (2005) & $332.5K (2006); Saline County/Watts Field, near Benton, $2.7M (2005); West Memphis Municipal, $2.6M (2006) & $1.8M (2005); El Dorado So. Arkansas Regional / Goodwin Field, $2M (2006) & $867K (2005); Stuttgart Municipal, $1.7M (2006); Jonesboro Municipal, $1.7M (2005); Baxter Co. Regional in Midway, $1.4M (2005); Hope Municipal, $946K (2005); Drake Field in Fayetteville, $928K (2006) & $278K (2005); Magnolia Municipal, $893K (2006); Osceola Municipal $785K (2005); Morrilton Municipal, $713K (2005); Thompson-Robbins Field in Helena-West Helena, $688K (2005); Warren Municipal, $675K (2006); Bentonville Municipal, $665K (2006) & $534K (2005); H L Hopkins-Fordyce, $622K (2006). [Full Article] Tags:airport, Arkansas, Blanche Lincoln, FAA, Federal Aviation Administration, Mark Pryor, taxesTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
'Grassroots' Lobbying Reform: What are Democrats Trying to Hide?
by Mark Fitzgibbons: In January, the "Bennett Amendment" . . . removed the provisions from the Senate lobbying reform bill that would have regulated advocacy communication to and among the general public: the grassroots. Forty-three senators, all Democrats, . . . voted to keep the unconstitutional grassroots provisions in that bill. Fortunately, they failed.
Six Washington-based lobbying organizations with strong insider ties to the Democratic Party are still pushing hard to regulate grassroots, citizen-supported activism under the guise of lobbying reform. They know they need a watered-down version in the House compared to the Senate provision that was roundly criticized as an unconstitutional assault on citizen political activism.
Around late February, these stealthily-financed lobbying organizations were provided a copy of revised grassroots language expected to be introduced in the House as part of that chamber’s lobbying reform legislation. The Democratic leadership recently announced that it will move on the lobbying reform bill soon after Congress returns from Easter recess. An informal coalition of conservative and liberal grassroots organizations that are trying to protect the First Amendment (including the American Civil Liberties Union) have been shut out. . . .
By leaking the revised language to friendly lobbyists and lawyers who work for the Democratic National Committee (while withholding the language from those who would be regulated) House Democrats appear to be concealing their plan to prevent a debate. .Democracy 21 and Campaign Legal Center . . . have already begun misleading Congress and the public about the revised legislation. . . . Maybe Nancy Pelosi meant just Republican shenanigans were to be verboten. And maybe some Democrats believe that violating the First Amendment is the key to holding their newfound power. . . . [Read More]Contact your senators!Contact your representatives!Fitzgibbons is President of Corporate and Legal Affairs at American Target Advertising, Inc. in Manassas, VA. and a First Amendment lawyer specializing in grassroots law.
Tags:2nd Amendment, Democrats, First Amendment, free speech, grassroots, House, lobby reform, lobbying, religous freedom, US CongressTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
NYU Radicals Violate Minuteman Supporter's Civil Right to Free Speech
MCDC: On Monday in New York, just hours after President Bush advocated passage of his “guest worker”- amnesty bill, in the premeditated disruption of a scheduled debate at NYU, the founder of the “open borders” hate group Border Angels, Enrique Morones, launched an assault and hurled personal insults at Chris Simcox, Minuteman Volunteers and all border security proponents — then walked off the stage refusing to debate or discuss solutions to our nation’s border crisis.
“Murderer, racist, Nazi and fascist,” were the attempts at intimidation Morones chose as he defamed Chris Simcox, Minutemen supporters and all U.S. citizens who want real border security. Prompted by the Morones assault, amnesty supporters in the audience violated Chris Simcox’s civil rights by shouting and ringing cell phone tones while he spoke. Hatred, bigotry and racism are the tools amnesty and open border advocates use to try to silence the voices of law-abiding citizens in the debate over securing the border of the United States.
Tax Day this year is April 17 -- Join in Writing American History
Are you fed up with a convoluted tax code that even the IRS can't understand. Unfortunately, we can't count on our elected leaders to take on real tax reform just because it's the right thing to do. If you believe a change is needed then consider joining a grassroots effort to demonstrate overwhelming support for the FairTax. Everyone is invited!
Join in Writing American History: Any profound change in public policy requires citizen involvement. Only then will citizen's force a change on those Members of Congress unwilling to give up the power and the political advantages of control over federal taxes. The FairTax Plan is a nonpartisan national grassroots campaign to replace the federal income tax system with a progressive national retail sales tax. It provides a "prebate" to ensure no American pays federal taxes on spending up to the poverty level, dollar-for-dollar federal revenue replacement and, through companion legislation, repeal of the 16th Amendment. [Read More] Tags:FairTax Plan, income tax, FairTax, Fair TaxTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Illegal Diplomacy Did Nancy Pelosi commit a felony when she went to Syria?
The Logan Act, which has been on the books since John Adams was president in 1799, makes it a felony with up to three years in jail for any American, "without authority of the United States," to communicate with a foreign government in an effort to influence that government's behavior on any "disputes or controversies with the United States." Speaker Pelosi traveled to Syria and entered into direct conversations with the dictator of that nation against the will of President George W. Bush. He has specifically asked her not to go to Syria. The Supreme Court has upheld the law over the last 200 years. Read an in-depth Opinion Journal article By Robert F. Turner on this possible felony. Tags:Felon, Logan Act, Nancy Pelosi, Robert F. TurnerTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
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