Tuesday, July 31, 2007

11/1 debate footage from C-Span

I enjoyed the second debate much more-- very comfortable and took care of business...
Unfortunately, the last half-hour was not carried on TV (or taped)...

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Indiana Right to Life?

I agree with Mike Fichter, the Executive Director of Indiana Right to Life. He expressed dismay at Rep. Baron Hill's "vote to expand taxpayer funding of agencies that promote abortion" in foreign countries. The government far too frequently takes money from taxpayers-- and giving it to abortion providers is an especially aggravating example. But it seems odd that, in the 9th District's last election, Mr. Fichter's organization endorsed a candidate who did the same thing within our country-- taking $50-60 million per year from taxpayers to give to Planned Parenthood. (In the 2006 budget, this was done through HR3010.) Indiana Right to Life failed to endorse the one candidate who would not vote for such a thing-- and failed to ask the candidates' position on this issue in their election questionaire. Hopefully, Mr. Fichter's group will be more principled in 2008.

In response to:
"Right to Life leader unhappy with Hill" in Jeff/NA News-Tribune (July 5, 2007)
Rep. Baron Hill’s recent vote to expand taxpayer funding of agencies that promote abortion as a method of family planning in foreign countries is a slap in the face to voters in Indiana’s ninth congressional district who took Rep. Hill at his word when he stated his support for the 95-10 plan, a strategy promoted by Democrats for Life to reduce abortions by 95 percent over the next 10 years. Hill’s promotion of the 95-10 plan took many forms in the weeks leading up to the November 2006 elections, including campaign stops in heavily Catholic areas in the district. Now it is clear that his actions were not due to any convictions about protecting human life, but about getting elected to Congress...

Monday, July 02, 2007

letter to the editor of the C-J

Dear Editor,

I appreciate the Courier-Journal's focus on the plight of the poor in one of its June 23rd editorials. It's certainly worth wrestling with various market outcomes and the extent to which those are caused by some combination of producer fraud and consumer "stupidity".

That said, it is bizarre to ignore government policies that do far more harm to the poor. The government is quite busy increasing the price of food, clothing and shelter-- in order to help various interest groups. The government insists on operating a monopoly provision of K-12 education for those who cannot afford a choice. Federal payroll taxes impose an especially oppressive burden on the working poor and lower middle classes-- more than $3,000 per year in payoll taxes on those who earn $20,000 and more than $6,000 on those who earn $40,000. A number of states, including Indiana and Kentucky, impose state income taxes on the working poor. Etc., etc.

By any reckoning, the government's "gouging" of the poor is far deeper than anything the market might accomplish. And as the editorialist noted, "What's so maddening is that most of this pocket-picking is legal." Beyond pointing to potential specks in the market's eye, the working poor would be better served if the Courier-Journal would focus its attacks on the government's logs.