Saturday, April 30, 2016

Medicine, Coded for Disaster

Pretty much all institutions, crafts, professions and pursuits go through a number of cyclical forces. At a high level we have things like centralized control vs decentralized, process vs art/craft, public / private, big factory "assembly line" sorts of approaches vs skilled craftsmen --- we could go on.

Writing computer code went from a highly individualized "art" prior to say "the 1970's" and then became an increasingly heavyweight "Design - review - Code - review - Test - review, with tracked "defects" at each phase with plenty of "metrics" to make the "Waterfall" a one shot through a supposedly constantly improving process. The process got way too heavy.

Then came the Internet and Open Source and it all blew up to free-lance "super coders" throwing source across the net with abandon  and rapid cycling new versions constantly. "Design" largely died and even "specifications". The coders took back control of software -- and it went pretty much back to being an "art" rather than a "profession".

Medicine has been both an art and very much a profession for at least hundreds if not thousands of years. It is the most personal and intimate of "personal services", with the level of trust required in your dealings with your doctor exceeding all other relationships in your life when the combination of trusting in both their care / concern / focus / wisdom / confidentiality / character AND highly skilled technical expertise as a package in a single person.

Much like religion, a government that seeks to entirely control your life cannot allow this sort of relationship to NOT be mediated by government and kept under strict control of government. The linked article gives a lot of detail of how we have slid into the hole we are now in, and how it is nearly certain to get MUCH worse.

Before long, these codes were attached to a fee schedule based upon the amount of time a medical professional had to devote to each patient, a concept perilously close to another Marxist relic: the labor theory of value. Named the Resource-Based Relative Value System (RBRVS), each procedure code was assigned a specific value, by a panel of experts, based supposedly upon the amount of time and labor it required. It didn’t matter if an operation was being performed by a renowned surgical expert—perhaps the inventor of the procedure—or by a doctor just out of residency doing the operation for the first time. They both got paid the same.
"Process" attempts to convert humans into plug compatible "parts". That was bad enough with programmers -- in which the best are able to produce 10-100x the "output" of the "average".  Measuring that output is exceedingly difficult -- "lines of code" are often used, but most assuredly "more is NOT better". As in writing, the tightest, best performing, most free of problems, easiest to understand, extendable, maintainable ... etc, etc makes programmers FAR from "plug compatible".

Doctors, having MUCH larger requirements relative to knowledge, skill, judgement, decision making, diagnostic acumen,  very personal communication / interaction, etc, etc are far far less "compatible" than programmers. I did a blog post discussing the difference between the pilots that crashed a plane in Buffalo a few years back and "Sully" Sullenberger who dead sticked an Airbus into the Hudson with no loss of life. Paying doctors "all the same" is insane  -- as is thinking that converting medicine into an "assembly line" with a bunch of "codes and process" is somehow going to "improve" it. What it does is shift power and renumeration to bureaucrats and devalues the unique skills of doctors.

So what we end up with is this:

In other words, we’re about to experience the two-tiered system that already exists in most parts of the world that provide “universal coverage.” Those who have the financial means will still be able to get prompt, courteous, personalized, state-of-the-art health care from providers who consider themselves professionals. But the majority can expect long lines, mediocre and impersonal care from shift-working providers, subtle but definite rationing, and slowly deteriorating outcomes.
The best doctors will end up in the private system, and a lot of solid doctors the next echelon down will just leave medicine because it is no longer a profession and they are professionals. What 90% of the population is increasingly left with is best described in this from Ayn Rand's "Atlas Shrugged".

“Let them discover the kind of doctors that their system will now produce. Let them discover, in their operating rooms and hospital wards, that it is not safe to place their lives in the hands of a man whose life they have throttled. It is not safe, if he is the sort of man who resents it—and still less safe, if he is the sort who doesn’t.”

Friday, April 29, 2016

57 One Way Streets To Perdition

Thoughts from the ammo line | Power Line:

I've covered at least very nearly all of these, but the litany is important, I highly recommend reading it. As you read the following paragraph, context is important -- the ex-wife of the person BO was running against (Jack Ryan) was 7 of 9 ... Jeri Ryan. Men have done strange things when involved with even less good looking women.

In Obama’s 2004 race for the U.S. Senate – which was the springboard a mere 105 “Present” votes later for his Presidential campaign – first his primary opponent’s, then his general election opponent’s SEALED divorce records were broken into and unsealed. In one case, some extremely minor mutual push-and-shove “abuse” and, in the second, some consensual but embarrassing sexual hijinks spilled out into the world. Obama prevailed. What are the chances that someone could catch such a lucky break? Twice?

I'm with Ammo Grrril on  the basic reason that BO's records all need to be sealed.

I’ll tell you what I think: I think he got into college as a foreign student, one born in Africa and raised in Indonesia. I’m not a “birther.” I do not believe he was born in Africa. I believe he was, in fact, born in Hawaii. But I believe Obama is the original “birther”; he lied and said he was born in Africa to get into college, just as he did in the bio his booking agency used. A bio he let stand for 18 years, uncorrected. I also think the old Choom Gang slacker had mediocre grades. And I’d bet my favorite gun that every lawyer on Power Line kicked his ass on the LSAT. Prove me wrong, Barry. Let’s see the records.
The book bio is absolutely true -- but of course, nobody cares. We are on a lot of one way streets and BO is a Democrat. Nuff said! Good God, Hillary Clinton is running for for president and Mr blue stain is still around! We live in a world where well over 50% of the population is purely following the script laid down by The Party and it's media / propaganda arm.
Nothing but One-Way Streets. No wonder we’re on the road to perdition and can’t even make a U-Turn.

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Too Simple Amygdala

The Psychopath, the Altruist and the Rest of Us - WSJ:

An interesting article, but very misleadingly simple.

There is an interesting book that I've read and will maybe blog on at some point called "The Psychopath Inside" about a neuroscientist that discovers he is a psychopath. It gives a much better perspective to the psychopath side.

YES, there are brain structures that play a distinctive part, but how you are brought up, your intelligence, your life choices, your relationships and a myriad of other things have HUGE influence as well.

We are a LONG way from looking at one part of the brain and stating "you are a psychopath" or "you are a hyper-altruist"!

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Compassionate Salt

Christians, Don't Fall for the 'Compassion' Trap:

The linked article is an excellent read for Christians that are concerned about standing up for Christian values to read. It just misses having one scriptural quote to complete it.

Matt 5-13 "You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless." 
A teaser ... but I recommend reading it all.
First, there is no inconsistency between defending our culture from the latest sexual “reform” and loving our neighbors. It is compassionate to women and children to argue that governments and businesses shouldn’t render them more vulnerable to sexual predators. And if you believe the words of the Bible, there is nothing compassionate about acquiescing in the latest cultural demand to normalize immoral and troubled behavior. Yes, transgender men and women need the love of Jesus, but if by our words or deeds we contribute to the notion that their “transitions” are perfectly acceptable, we’re contributing to their own tragic self-mutilation.

Arrest Louis C. K., Campaign Finance Law

In-kind political contributions from celebrities should be regulated like cash donations:

Louis C. K. is doing a fundraiser for de Blasio -- Louis typically gets $500K - $1 million for an appearance.

It is impossible to see how Louis C. K.’s donating his only major asset — his celebrity — to the cause of Bill de Blasio is anything other than an in-kind contribution. And, given that Louis C. K.’s ordinary rate (between $500,000 and $1 million minimum for U.S. appearances) far exceeds the legal limit on contributions to mayoral campaigns, it is difficult to see why this should be legal while other in-kind contributions valued at the same level are forbidden. Why should $1 million worth of photocopying be verboten while $1 million worth of high-value celebrity fund-raising is hunky-dory?
So why does Louis not get arrested like Dinesh D'Souza did?

We know this answer, de Blasio is a DEMOCRAT! If we didn't have laws on the books to criminalize political activity that opposes "The Party" (D), we would have this.

I am a First Amendment absolutist and a free-speech absolutist. I think Louis C. K. should be able to say what he likes, where he likes, how he likes, on behalf of whatever candidate he likes. But I also think the same thing about Charles and David Koch, Exxon, and Charles C. W. Cooke.
Anyone that takes even a TINY amount of time to look at "campaign finance" and "money in politics" knows that what is the problem from the ruling TP perspective is CONSERVATIVE money in politics! The only reason laws have been put on the books is to make it possible to put people like D'Souza in jail if TP desires. Louis C. K. is completely free to provide an in-kind donation of $500K-$1 Million to TP, in fact he is great guy in the eyes of TP for doing so! (surprise, surprise)

In California, if someone is accused of "coordination" with "outside spending groups", they are "Guilty until proven innocent" in direct violation of UN human rights law, to which the US is a signer.

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Criminalizing Politics, Dinesh D'Souza

Dinesh D’Souza avoids jail time, gets five years of probation for campaign finance violation - The Washington Post:

D'Souza's real crime is being a conservative. He has written books and done movies critical of left wing policies and politicians -- most prominently BO and Hildebeast.

"Campaign Finance laws" are simply laws to criminalize opposition to "The Party" (TP-D). The entire government bureaucracy and the vast majority of the legal system are controlled by TP. The idea of them "prosecuting" a Democrat for some campaign finance "infraction" isn't even in their imagination. The only campaign finance infraction a Democrat could possibly commit is NOT RAISING ENOUGH MONEY!

We live in a country run by and for TP -- so those that are willing to oppose TP need to be punished. How else will they get their minds right?

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Thursday, April 28, 2016

An Interest In Sheep

If I Lose Friends Over Trump, So Be It:

Back in the old days, US politics was a bit more like this old cartoon.

Both parties had a strong interest in the sheeple, just from a bit varied perspective. At the end of the day, they punched the clock and went off for a few drinks in some smoke filled room.

My personal theory is that they were all Christians, Americans, men (yes, and typically white) -- they believed in God, the Bible, Mom, Apple Pie and Chevrolet. They might argue over baseball, which highball was the best, brand or cigarette, "Ginger or Mary Ann", but they were generally "fine fellows well met".

My view of today's problem is that the coyotes have taken over Washington -- both "sides" are primarily concerned with dividing up the spoils, so they act like they really hate each other, but in fact what they TRUELY hate is Cruz or Trump.

The article tries to claim that Trump is some sort of aberration that is REALLY worth "losing friends over". I'm guessing the guy would hate Cruz at least as bad if not worse. BO was something we have never seen in American politics before either -- a man who stated his core identity as "Luo Tribesman" and his mission as "destruction of the colonial powers".

Hildebeast is a known criminal, pathological liar, and failed miserably at the only semi-real job she ever held (SOS). Everyone is thinks Trump is wrong about "She wouldn't even get 5% if she wasn't a woman".  It is hard to imagine her even existing -- her two "qualifications" are First Lady and Failed SOS. It is hard to be a "First Lady" without being a woman (so far), and she would have never been SOS if she hadn't been First Lady.

I'm a Cruz guy, but at least Trump is a "wild card". We know that Hildebeast is total corruption, absolutely self serving and grossly incompetent. Maybe Trump will surprise us -- who knows. I'll take Russian Roulette over a sure bullet to the brain.

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Eugenics: “The Thick-fingered Clowns We Call The People”

I'm starting to think that the New Yorker might be the victims of a "terrorist attack" if they keep this kind of reporting up. The quote in the title is from Oliver Wendell Holmes -- that paragon of American "progressivism". However, as one reads to the end, we discover that this find column is yet another cautionary tale on "Trumpism" rather that the wonderful "progressivism" of our day.
Cohen writes that there was widespread skepticism about eugenics among those whom Oliver Wendell Holmes once referred to as “the thick-fingered clowns we call the people,” but the opposition wasn’t large or organized enough to effectively counter the influential network behind the movement.
Naturally, the New Yorker sees no similarity between BO's calling out "the bitter clingers" nor their own allusions to Trump supporters later in the article:
The 2016 Presidential campaign has reverberated with appeals to strength and victory and virility and contempt for weakness and failure and foreigners, hitting notes of blatant ugliness that we’re not used to hearing in the public sphere. The response in some quarters has been bafflement, as though this way of speaking had materialized out of nowhere.
Perhaps some "imbeciles" have been breeding in the Red States after all?
What is hardest to forget about “Imbeciles” is the stream of grandiose invective against the supposedly unfit—the diatribes concerning “germs of dependency and delinquency” and the “world peopled by a race of degenerates and defectives.” It’s a language that combines the detachment of scientific terminology with the heat of bigoted slurs.
Yes, apparently the "bitter clingers" in fly-over America are not yet fully "imbeciles", but one doesn't need to listen to very much NPR or read much NY Times to realize that those Trump supporters are certainly not much above genetic flotsam and jetsam.
As Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote to a friend, about his pleasure in writing the Buck decision, “Sooner or later one gets a chance to say what one thinks.”
I've read enough of the left to know that they have done plenty of "studies" about how "conservative brains" are more gullible, less prone to believe in "facts", etc -- they know they are superior and their big issue is how long they have to put up with the inferior conservatives!

I'm definitely "thick fingered", and no doubt Oliver Wendell Holmes would find me to be an "imbecile". That's OK. When I was young I spent some time with young adults that worked at a nursing home who were certainly "low IQ" which was referred to at that time as "retarded".

Personally, I prefer to be identified with them than with Oliver Wendell Holmes! I like to think that Oliver or even most of the New Yorker staff would treat me rather well 1 on 1 -- let's face it, intelligence isn't everything!

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Lucifer In the Flesh

John Boehner Describes Ted Cruz as 'Lucifer in the Flesh' - First Draft. Political News, Now. - The New York Times:

Boehner feels that Ted Cruz is "Lucifer in the Flesh". Here is a sample of the teary ones rhetoric on this topic.

“I have Democrat friends and Republican friends,” Mr. Boehner told David Kennedy, an emeritus history professor, at the event. “I get along with almost everyone, but I have never worked with a more miserable son of a bitch in my life.”
I'd be honored to have Mr Kleenex as an enemy -- as PJ O'Rourke has opined, "Christ said to love our enemies, he didn't say not to have any!"

I'll leave my comments on the crybaby with this from Revelation 3:16

"So, because you are lukewarm--neither hot nor cold--I am about to spit you out of my mouth."
My guess is that Christ approves of Lucifer over Boehner -- at least you KNOW where Satan stands! He DOESN'T have "friends" on both sides! 

Why Is Productivity So Weak?

Why Is Productivity So Weak? Three Theories - The New York Times:

It's really weak ... like it was on the late 1970's. The NY Times helpfully gives us three theories:

  1. All "the good ideas" have been fully exploited -- computerization, outsourcing, management strategies, etc. It's not going to get better. 
  2. It's just a measurement error -- we don't really know how to count the value of all the current "good stuff". 
  3. We are "investing heavily" in new stuff like "driverless cars" that will come to fruition and "everything will be better". 
I'll give you another theory. You can either focus on government solving everything, making everything "more sustainable" and dealing with increased regulation, bureaucracy and the potential for endless new government programs -- BOcare, "green" this and that, open borders, higher minimum wages, etc ... **OR** you create new productive innovations, create new industries that MAKE STUFF, invest in the private sector with reasonable confidence that there will be REAL GROWTH, and assume that government will increasingly GET OUT OF THE WAY. 

Productivity stunk in the late 1970's and it stinks now since 2008 -- the first Carter administration sucked and the second one stunk worse -- we even labeled Carter II "BO". 

When you have a country that allows cheap labor to stream in by the millions, why would you focus on "increased productivity"? Why did people innovate and come of with fracking and lateral drilling when oil prices were HIGH? Duh ... because it PAID OFF! 

So when labor cost is a race to the bottom, the NY Times is "surprised" that investment in productivity is low? Perhaps they need to read Zero to One

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The Science Of Training White People

The scientific way to train white people to stop being racist — Quartz:

Back in 2007, the "progressives" were trying out the idea that "race was a social construct" ... it didn't really exist in the real world, it was mostly created in the US to support slavery and the continued oppression of blacks. At that time, Kevin Garnett was a big B-ball star and was forced to live his life of racial oppression on  $15 million a year.

The linked article would seem to say that in the case of race being a construct, the wisdom of "the latest is always most correct" ("progressivism") failed in 2007! Race is BACK! and it is more dug in that ever. In fact, it is a "core of our existence"!

When the core of our existence is brought into question, it gets emotional pretty quickly.
In this world, the greatest gift of religion (or transcendent philosophy) is that you have a core of your existence that is NOT your "race, income, health, gender, politics, intelligence, education ....".
When our reality as good and moral people feels threatened, up go the defenses and we stop listening. That “track-switching” process right there is actually a continuation and reinforcement of our privilege—whites get to walk away from the implications of race when people of color don’t have that luxury, so let’s get real about that for a second.
To be a Christian is to daily give up the idea that we are "good and moral people" and accept that we are broken and vile beggars seeking Grace. It's a perspective that makes viewpoints like the article's fall into the old song "and the things of this earth will grow strangely dim ..."

When all you have is your position of relative power in this world and there are no transcendent or sacred values, then EVERYTHING is about POWER. It's a Hobbesian world of tooth and claw (in this case intellectual / power / privilege meaning "life"), so it is (intellectually) "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short." The assumption is that SOMEONE's "will to power" (Nietzsche) World View will rise to the top and force all others to bow to it. "The Party" is pretty darned sure that they have that World View well in hand ... in fact, they are exceedingly smug about it.

We have only really existed in a world nearly bereft of spirit, history and philosophy since "the 1950's" -- ("Closing of the American Mind"),  so today, a dogs breakfast of ideologies, grievance / minority groups of all sorts (in this case focused on race), now define the "cultural order".

In the absence of God, every person is their own "god", and quickly seeks to find some sort of group identification to replace the lost belonging once provided by religion, culture, nationality, etc. Race, gender, sexual preference, economic status, political leaning -- the list is endless and often frivolous -- "Gothic", tattooed, rides a Harley -- groups expand and they ALL seek for their group to be "the truth" and for "all other groups" to get used to their "very special" point of view as being ultimately right!  "All pigs are equal, but some are more equal than others!" (Orwell, Animal House)

In the case of the linked article, the fact the permeates all society is race and "white privilege", and THOU SHALT not question the pronouncements of the race industry on the matter -- thus, "science" is to be used to force your conversion to their world view!
There’s an understanding in the field that people of color may have a greater access to what it means to be white than white people, just as women have a greater understanding of what it means to be male than men—it’s a product of living as a minority. So calm yourself and try to listen, even if only because you look foolish grabbing at straws for an explanation of something much greater than your own small behaviors.
See, blacks know more about what it is to be white and women know more about males than men -- somewhat strangely, what they "know" is very negative, but never the less it is the "true facts", and obviously any white male is going to feel hideous about looking "foolish" in front of a black or a woman!  (the prospect is so humiliating it provokes anxiety to write it!) You may not understand the kind of smugness that is needed to reach those sort of conclusions, but they are kind enough to include a link in the article to an example!

It is amazing how often arguments for "superiority of perspective" in a world with no standards or truth, call for a time machine. I suppose if morality, truth, reason, philosophy and history are all "power constructs", a "time machine" is as good an argument as any. But the real core argument (to the extent there even is one beyond MIGHT IS RIGHT) is this.
You were born where you were born, your skin is the color that it is, and you grew up how you did, exposed to the media and a society that you had no control over, all of which led you to being exactly who you are today.
... The myth of meritocracy gets in the way of seeing this—we all want to hold onto our story that we’re strong, smart, and deserve everything we have.
Naturally, the "story" of the authors of the article is not a "story" at all, but "settled science".

There is no merit. "Who you are" is semi-randomly determined by your birth, your society, etc -- there is no purpose for your life. You have no "gifts, destiny, soul". There is no "merit" in building cathedrals, serving God, writing great literature, exploring the world or even going to the Moon. Chucking spears at a passing wildebeest, putting bones in your nose and dancing around the campfire to the rhythm of drums is at least equivalent, and as they say above, in their universe "superior", since black people know more about what it is to be white than white people do.

Why is it again that people have a hard time getting along when everyone's story is supposedly equally valid? Well, because that is a bold faced lie. The game is about POWER, and he who can destroy the "stories" of what was a great culture and replace them with the "Good Facts" of multiculturalism, diversity, socialism, gender identity, "tolerance" (for people that agree with "The Party"), feminism, environmentalism, etc can gain power and eventually FORCE compliance!

Somehow, as The Party gains greater and greater power, I suspect our own home brewed "National Socialists" will find even BETTER "Scientific Training" to convince any who fail to see the brilliance of their "truth" from daring to question them. If some refuse to consider themselves "foolish", it can be important for those people to be dead so that "the truth" doesn't get "confused".

As long as a few million of us are smart enough to fail to see the 2nd Amendment as an "ideological construct of a racist white patriarchy", we ought to be fine. No matter how smug someone is,  multiple rounds of .223 to head and chest tends to introduce some humility. There may not be such a thing as "merit", but there is such a thing as hitting the target.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Total Federal Taxes -- Income, FICA, Corporate

Here are the income quintiles for the US ... take the 320ish million people and divide into 5 groups by income. Each group will have about 6.5 million people in it (6.5 x 5 = "32") the bottom of the first quintile is 0 and the top is $21K. The bottom of the next is $21K and the top is $41K --- $68K, $112K, the top starts at $112 and the top is the highest income person in the US for that year.

*** Note, the right 5 columns are ALL relative to the top quintile since it is a HUGE income range.

Points to be taken away from this:
  • No matter how you slice it, people that make less than $100K really don't pay that much in FEDERAL taxes as a % 
  • Remember ... state, property, gas, sales, hotel, license fees, cigarette, liquor, etc, etc are NOT included here! It is still WAY short of "total tax". 
  • Taxes on business are paid by the customers, investors and workers of that business! MOSTLY by the customers -- because if they can't pass the tax along, they go out of business. 
  • It's pretty easy to see how a "flat tax" could work. If everyone paid "17-20%" in taxes and there were no corporate taxes, we would increase tax revenue, keep business in the country, increase incentives for old guys like me to work and maybe best of all, get out of the idea that the bottom 3 quintiles can get added benefits and have the top pay for it! 
 Good article overall and not that long. 

They Fear Critical Thinking, Ayaan Hirsi Ali i

Why Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s Criticism of Islam Angers Western Liberals | Observer:

Ayaan Hirsi Ali is hated by both Muslims and the Western left wing. I think the following paragraph sums it up completely why that is for BOTH parties.
“They want everyone to get out of their way,” she says. “They fear critical thinking. Anyone in the Islamic world with intelligence who takes a minute to think will not like what they see.”

They want all opposition out of their way and they fear critical thinking. Islam, the Western left,"The Party", students on American college campuses or the liberal relative or associate you deal with. They brook no opposition -- they fear it and they DON'T WANT IT TO EXIST!

But as Ms. Hirsi Ali works to combat those challenges, she finds herself battling the stubborn, unrelenting forces that would have her censored. The efforts to tar her with the tried-and-true epithet of “Islamophobic” come both from powerful Muslim enterprises that would like to squash her like a bug and some on the left, for whom a narrative of the Muslim world as victims and the West as victimizers is precious and comfortable. They regard Ms. Hirsi Ali as trouble. She is, after all, a Muslim-born woman who personally experienced the very abuse that she criticizes. The 46-year-old is also a superb writer, a winning speaker, inarguably courageous and telegenic to boot. She is an atheist as well. For those who wish to suppress criticism of the plight of women under Islam, she is, in short, a disaster.
If the left cared at all about the rights of women, they would never take the side of Islam. If they cared for the rights of gays, they would never take the side of Islam. They "care" for neither, what they care about is the destruction of Western civilization and POWER.

” She countered: “I embrace Muslims but I reject Islamic law … because it’s totalitarian, because it’s bigoted and especially bigoted against women.” The anger she stirs on the left confounds her. “You have to ask yourself why anyone would align with proponents of Islamic law,” she says with wonder. 
Ms. Hirsi Ali has no good answer to this question, and she is not the only one. “How do I get liberals to understand that we are the liberals in this debate?” television host Bill Maher asked her about the subjugation of women in Muslim communities around the world and the indulgence in violence that is taught there. Ms. Hirsi Ali is doing her best. What is terribly unclear is whether the left is prepared to listen.
Why is this answer hard for her and Bill Maher? If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, swims like a duck, flies like a duck, etc, are you going to believe it if it tells you it's an elephant???? "Liberals" stole the name "liberal", they are no more liberal than a duck is an elephant. Fascists, totalitarians, Statists, zealots, fundamentalists, etc -- THOSE are all worthy names for them, and for most Muslims as well!

For the left, it isn't just science that is "settled", IT'S EVERYTHING! -- and people that don't know that are just poorly informed or too stupid to understand it.

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Suicide And Bloodletting

There's Been A Startling Rise In Suicide Rates In The U.S.:

Around the time of the American Revolution, "Bloodletting" was considered pretty much a universal cure -- it is fairly commonly accepted that it killed President Washington. The theory was that your "humors" got out of balance, so everyone needed to let out a few pints from time to time. When you got sick, it needed to be done early. If you got sicker, you needed to let more blood. More was better and starting the process early was critical. If the patient died, clearly you didn't start early enough or let enough. More aggressive action was called for on the next case!

If you need any more proof that mental health disorders are a public health issue, look no further than rising suicide rates over the last decade and a half. 
Deaths from suicide have increased 24 percent from 1999 to 2014, according to an analysis of Americans aged 5 and up conducted by researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Any of the rest of you notice a huge decline in government intervention in all aspects of health and mental care from 1999 to 2014? No? Anybody see the OPPOSITE? Anyone hear that drugs for depression and other mental illness are being prescribed at record levels?

As the article points out, suicide rates among high school educated whites are rising rapidly, but interestingly ...
Black men were the only racial and gender group to lower their rate of suicide; it declined 8 percent between 1999 and 2014.
Anyone want to bet that when you have something between 4-6K young black men murdering each other every year it cuts down on the suicide rate for the survivors? THERE might be the poster for "More Government" -- see, the largest government intervention in family lives in the nation is in the black inner city, and their suicide rate is lower!". Wonderful -- born to be shot you will never be hung. Dying by murder is a guarantee you won't commit suicide!

We have more and more government, but LESS people gainfully employed, LESS intact families, and LESS community coherence. For the common person, American life is meaningless and empty -- and suicide rates are rising rapidly.

Government is the modern equivalent of bloodletting -- no matter the condition, the assumed answer is to get it more involved quicker. If things don't seem to be improving, apply even MORE government to the problem!

Bloodletting still kills!

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Liberal Judgement

An excellent article by Dennis Prager (he pretty much only does excellent!), highly recommended to read the entire thing.

His point is that the left loathes all standards and judgement save their own.

Bible-based religions affirm a morally judging God. For the Left, that is anathema. For the Left, the only judging allowed is Leftist judging of others. No one judges the Left. Neither man nor God.
Since Western civilization was founded on Bible-based religion (Judaism and Christianity), the left hates Western civilization, so therefore the enemy of Western civilization is their friend.

The Left similarly describes any suggestion that anything Western is superior to anything non-Western. Likewise, the Left dismisses virtually all Western achievements, but regards criticism of anything non-Western as racist, chauvinistic, imperialist, colonialist, xenophobic, etc.

That is why the Left is so protective of Islam. America’s first left-wing president, Barack Obama, will not use, or allow the government to use, the words “Islamic terrorism”; and all criticism of Islam is labeled “Islamophobic,” thereby morally equating any such criticism with racism. It is not that the Left is sympathetic to Islam; the Left has contempt for all religions. It is that many Muslims loathe the West, and the enemies of my enemy (the West) must be protected.
Prager is smarter and more rational than I, so he doesn't take the next step. Revelation 12:10 "And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night."

Job is also an excellent source to see Satan the accuser in action. As Luther said, "Man is an ass, he is ridden by God or by Satan." As Christ says in Matt 11:30 "For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." Christ seeks to give those under his care peace, Satan seeks to make sure they are FULLY occupied! Satan WILL be cast down, but for some reason (my guess is that it is the price for "free will", he is still accusing today) 

So we see the left -- screaming, yelling, marching, demonstrating. Constantly angry, offended, outraged, oppressed, burdened with horrid unfairness -- all the while, seeking to "remove the burden of having standards"! 

Of course what is really meant is "no standards but theirs" -- Thou shalt bow before the altar of Global Warming, Gay Rights, Transexual Rights, support of ISLAM, women's rights, BLM, income equality. Gods standards are known and unchanging, and his Grace is freely available.  The "standards" (accusations) of Satan are explicitly designed to be a constant thorn, and there is no grace -- only constant accusation and ever greater demands for sin and depravity. 

You think you would draw the line and infant sacrifice to Baal? Try 60 million dead to the Baal of abortion already in what was once a great nation while Satan cackles and the flames rise. 

God is a just judge that judges from the standard of Truth, yet another name for Christ. If you are in Christ, you will be judged from the standard of God looking at Christ and imputing his righteousness to you . Satan is a capricious and evil judge -- he enjoys sentencing souls and whole nations to eternal damnation. Eternal misery loves eternal company. 

The power of Satan grows each day in the US. When someone loses their employment for saying that men and women need to use the bathrooms which align with their genitals, and you see the mass of the left leering with delight at their "moral" power, we are allowed a vision of Hell right here on earth. The evil schadenfreude false joy of casting your enemies down as you shift standards on a daily basis is palpable as the next barrier of common decency is breached and the noose of totalitarian enforcement of even the tiniest infraction of "The Party's" rules tightens. 

People are losing their jobs over men not using the women's bathroom -- how long before our currency reads "In Satan we trust"?