Monthly Archives: June 2009

Schaller party ascends Mt. Bierstadt

As recent transplants to Colorado from Pennsylvania, we are overwhelmed daily by the beauty and majesty of our new home state. As a family, we have enjoyed hiking for several years. Many of our family vacations (New Hampshire, Virginia and the Grand Canyon) were planned to experience hiking in these areas. And now that we are residents of Colorado, we no longer need to leave the state to experience the greatest hiking in the country!

Of course, the biggest challenge for hikers in Colorado are the “14ers” (the 54 mountains that surpass 14,000 feet above sea level). There are many hikers who have made it their goal to summit all 54 of them, including my family. So we figured it was time to get started. Unfortunately, my wife had to work, so it was just going to be Daddy and the girls (Zoe, 14 and Madeline, 11). Continue reading

First fix Medicare, Mr. President

America’s health care system certainly has its share of problems, of which most emanate from politicians’ tinkering. They keep tempting the frustrated consumer with promises of better benefits at someone else’s expense.

So the prospect of President Obama and Congress remaking American health care in their own image should scare the pants off anyone who looks not merely at the existing problems but at government’s abysmal record as a problem-solver. Continue reading

‘Axis of Evil’ having their way with USA

(Boston) While the world watched the fraudulent Iranian elections by chance I found myself here in the historic capital of American election fraud.

Just a few steps from Boston’s City Hall the Union Oyster House has been a favored haunt of local politicians since Colonial times. As we sampled the culinary delights of this Beantown landmark my companion- a wryly self-described “humble servant of the people”- noted that two centuries earlier Governor Elbridge Gerry had enjoyed similar fare here. It was he who invented “gerrymandering”, a method of redistricting now institutionalized in every state as the most successful form of election fraud in American history. Continue reading

Same old same old Sonia

(Denver Post, June 21) “It is a small state, and yet there are those who love it.” Sen. Daniel Webster, arguing the Dartmouth case before the Supreme Court, actually said “college,” not “state.” But my paraphrase is apropos for Coloradans in a summer when the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor has everyone talking about senators and justices.

We do love this smallish state of ours, and jealousy for Colorado’s prerogatives of self-government is in order as we debate replacing David Souter. “Don’t tread on me,” the defiant flag of the founding era, has made a comeback at this year’s Tea Parties. Does Sotomayor get that? Not that I can tell, which means she’s wrong for the court. Continue reading

CCU hosts teens for a week of “Freedom 101”

One hundred students from high schools far and wide are with us on the CCU campus this week for “Freedom 101,” a short course on free-market economics conducted by the Foundation for Economic Education, New York-based granddaddy of all the libertarian and conservative think tanks, with the assistance of Prof. Tamara Hannaway of the CCU business school. Here’s a firsthand report from the FEE blog. Here’s the latest from Hannaway on how liberty fuels prosperity, in the June Centennial Review, page 3.

Opposition party’s job is to oppose

When during a particularly bitter Parliamentary debate in 1909 the Liberal Prime Minister Herbert Asquith denounced Conservatives for their “willful, constant, and unyielding opposition” to almost every Government policy, the Conservative leader Arthur Balfour swiftly replied, “May I remind the Prime Minister that the first duty of an opposition is to oppose and when as is now the case Government policies are reckless, feckless, and threatening permanent damage to the country that duty rises to the level of sacred obligation. “ Continue reading

Liberty’s roots the same in Tehran 2009 & Philadelphia 1776

The Associated Press description of the insurrection in Tehran on Sunday, June 14 provided an account of how opposition leader Mr. Mousavi’s newspaper, Kalemeh Sabz, was printed but never disseminated on Sunday morning. The government of Mr. Ahmadinejad was disgruntled over some of the charges being made in the paper, so authorities arrived at the printing offices and confiscated the papers. When asked about this turn of events, Mr. Ahmadinejad responded: “Don’t worry about freedom in Iran.” Continue reading

Will debt sink US as it did Ottomans?

For 500 years the Ottoman Empire had dominated the Middle East and the Balkans. Their domain stretched from the Atlantic to the Persian Gulf and Indian Ocean, from the Sahara to the Crimea. Their vast armies several times besieged Vienna and for centuries plundered southern Russia for slaves. But by the end of the 19th century they were called “the sick man of Europe”. What caused the collapse of this mighty empire?

Turkish sultans ruling from Constantinople realized that to keep up with the West they needed to modernize. Lacking the productivity and economic dynamism of Europe, they borrowed from western banks in an effort to bring their military and civilian infrastructure to western levels. By 1881 Turkish debt to the West exceeded £200 million, forcing the government into bankruptcy. Continue reading

God’s mercy endures, but 3rd Circuit demurs

In the fall of 2004, Wesley Busch was a kindergarten student at the Marple Newtown School District in Marple, Pennsylvania. Each week, one of the students in his class would be the featured student in a classroom unit entitled “All About Me.” During their assigned week, students were asked to design a poster (favorite things to do, favorite things to eat, places to go, etc.) and on the final day of the week, one of the child’s parents was asked to come to class and bring something of importance to share. Often this would include bringing a favorite book to read for the class. Continue reading

Europe’s right turn may again show America the way

The left in this country has made much of the big electoral victories that the Democrats won in 2006 and 2008 — and for good reason. Not since 1977, when Jimmy Carter swept to victory along with huge Democrat majorities in the House and Senate, has there been such lopsided partisan rule in this country. With Al Franken seemingly a lock to win the Minnesota Senate seat, the Democrats are on the verge of a 60 vote “supra majority” that is virtually filibuster proof. The immediate future seems to all be swinging the left’s way, and all the things that come with it are now a foregone conclusion: major health care reform, tax increases, deficit spending and a spate of intensive, restrictive environmental regulation. Continue reading