“On Second Thought, Don’t Panic”

From HotAir’s Ed Morrissey,

With Joe Biden keeping his family off of public transportation and Barack Obama giving prime-time hygiene lessons, one might be forgiven for climbing into a bunker while waiting for the first third of Stephen King’s The Stand to unfold.  Instead, people can stand down from panic mode.  Scientists have begun concluding that the latest strain of the swine flu, or H1N1 for those too sensitive to pork, may in fact be less dangerous than normal flu strains we see every year:

As the World Health Organization raised its infectious disease alert level Wednesday and health officials confirmed the first death linked to swine flu inside U.S. borders, scientists studying the virus are coming to the consensus that this hybrid strain of influenza — at least in its current form — isn’t shaping up to be as fatal as the strains that caused some previous pandemics.

In fact, the current outbreak of the H1N1 virus, which emerged in San Diego and southern Mexico late last month, may not even do as much damage as the run-of-the-mill flu outbreaks that occur each winter without much fanfare.

“Let’s not lose track of the fact that the normal seasonal influenza is a huge public health problem that kills tens of thousands of people in the U.S. alone and hundreds of thousands around the world,” said Dr. Christopher Olsen, a molecular virologist who studies swine flu at the University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine in Madison.

That’s exactly what I wrote yesterday.  Apart from Mexico, WHO scientists haven’t seen excess mortality in infected people.  They’re beginning to suspect that a complicating condition exists there, either poorer medical response or another environmental component that creates more fatalities.

It’s still too early to dismiss the danger out of hand, and the lack of a specific vaccine for this strain makes response slower than anyone would like.  However, the amount of panic over the handful of cases worldwide seems all out of proportion, and perhaps nowhere more so than at the White House itself.  Clearly, they wanted a chance to show that they could handle a crisis, and either purposefully or accidentally blew this one into a crisis so severe that Americans had to be warned away from public transport.

The flu causes far too many deaths in the US and around the world, and those at higher risk need to take precautions against exposure.  Let’s keep the overall danger in perspective, though.

Published in: on April 30, 2009 at 7:25 pm  Leave a Comment  

“Remaking America” Into What?

President Obama celebrated the completion of 7% of his term in office by saying that “we’ve begun the work of remaking America.”


The powers of a President (and his “we”) do not include “remaking America” (no matter what FDR seemed to believe).  Nowhere in the Constitution (that Obama promised to preserve and defend) is the President given the ability to “remake” anything.  Lawmaking, which is the closest thing to remaking that is outlined in the Constitution, is reserved for the Legislative branch.

So I want to know…what are we being remade into?  Which nations are superior to the U.S. that we’re modeling ourselves after?  China? Canada? “England?” France?

Veronique de Rugy, a native of France, is convinced that would be a great tragedy for America.

From the Center for Freedom and Prosperity,via HotAir,

Published in: on April 30, 2009 at 6:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

“The ‘Blessing’ of Abortion”

WORLD magazine editor Marvin Olasky exposes a view on abortion that exists, but is rarely proclaimed so bluntly.

You’ll be shocked to find this woman, Katharine Hancock Ragsdale, is not a mainstream atheist or a Women’s Studies professor, but an Episcopal minister.  I pray that she sees the Truth before she faces her Maker.

Via Townhall.com,

Abortion is a blessing and our work is not done. Let me hear you say it: abortion is a blessing and our work is not done. Abortion is a blessing and our work is not done. Abortion is a blessing and our work is not done.”

That was the Rev. Katherine Hancock Ragsdale in 2007, repetitiously inciting her disciples to be not just pro-choice but fanatically pro-abortion. This is significant because, according to standard journalistic stylebooks, Ragsdale does not exist. We’re told that pro-choice folks don’t like abortion; they’re just trying to help a woman facing tragedy.

Ragsdale, though, says abortion is a “blessing,” and not only in harsh situations but good ones: “When a woman becomes pregnant within a loving, supportive, respectful relationship; has every option open to her; decides she does not wish to bear a child; and has access to a safe, affordable abortion—there is not a tragedy in sight—only blessing. The ability to enjoy God’s good gift of sexuality without compromising one’s education, life’s work, or ability to put to use God’s gifts and call is simply blessing.”

Ragsdale is in the news because of a plum appointment: On July 1 she is scheduled to become president of Episcopal Divinity School, a major seminary near Harvard that was founded in 1974 when two venerable divinity schools (founded in 1858 and 1867) merged.

Hear some more of Ragsdale’s statement to her troops: “I want to thank all of you who protect this blessing—who do this work every day: the health care providers, doctors, nurses, technicians, receptionists, who put your lives on the line to care for others (you are heroes—in my eyes, you are saints); the escorts and the activists; the lobbyists and the clinic defenders; all of you. You’re engaged in holy work.”

Ragsdale is a member of the board of NARAL Pro-Choice America and for eight years chaired the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Rights. Nevertheless, calling abortion “holy work” seemed so over-the-top that WORLD called Ragsdale to ask whether a fanatic had taken her name in a variant of identity theft. Ragsdale acknowledged that the words were hers and that she still identified abortion with “blessing.” She said, though, that she had pulled that speech off her website because it was “creating an occasion for sin” as readers posted critical comments. She also said she’s “really busy and can’t keep up with the comments coming in.”

How has Ragsdale developed her position? I looked on her website at sermons that remain. In 2005 she asked rhetorically why pro-lifers did not look at pro-aborts “with tolerance and respect.” She then said, “The answer to that question is that in this arena it is women who must make the final decision and that you do not respect the moral agency (or full personhood) of women simply because we are women.” Convenient: It’s not about life; it’s about sexism.

But go back further, to an Easter sermon in 2003 when she said that the Resurrection may never have happened. (Paul wrote to the Corinthians, “If Christ has not been raised, our faith is futile . . . we are of all people most to be pitied.”) And go back further to Easter 2002: “The suffering and death of Jesus, according to the theory of the Atonement, pays for our sins and buys our salvation. It’s an interesting theory, but not one that I find compelling.”

Some denominations have cracked open on issues of homosexual ordination, but the fissure began long before, when clerics put God on trial and chose which doctrines they found compelling. In 2003, proclaiming her lesbianism, Ragsdale took aim at those who say that “we can’t help being gay—the old take pity, have mercy, argument. You know, the one that concludes with a plaintive—who would choose this? Let me answer that with three words: Me! Me! Me!”

The tragedy of abortion is bad enough, but the origin of the tragedy, and so many others of our time, emerges from worship not of Christ but of “me, me, me.” Katherine Ragsdale may show this tendency in a heightened form, but all of us display it to some degree. May God have mercy on her, on her students, and on all of us.

Published in: on April 30, 2009 at 6:04 pm  Comments (1)  

Serious Journalism: “CNN on Obama’s Swagga”


To cleanse the palate, a dose of flava. Had Megyn Kelly pulled this on Juan Williams over at FNC — replete with rap intro and gratuitous fist bump — you’d have seen lefties immolating themselves in horrified protest at the cartoonish stereotyping. As it is, this isn’t half bad as a microcosm of the media’s coverage of The One’s first 100 days: Consumed with style and barely trying to conceal their admiration. When you’re fourth place in the ratings, I guess it doesn’t matter what you do; no one’s watching anyway. Click the image to watch.

How many seconds would it have taken for the left to cry RAACCIISSMM if this segment ran on Fox News?

Published in: on April 29, 2009 at 11:03 pm  Comments (3)  

Follow your Money


Have you wondered where the Treasury Department has dispatched more than $1 Trillion of your money?

ProPublica has a great breakdown of where the money has gone, who it’s gone to, who has paid it back, and which companies are still undergoing “stress tests.”  Here.

Examine it with your children.  They’ll be paying for it, too.

Published in: on April 29, 2009 at 10:02 pm  Leave a Comment  

Good Riddance- and Take Your Friends From Maine with You.

Hopefully Senator Arlen Specter (PA) will enjoy his 15 minutes, because he’s already being overshadowed by the swine flu.

A seasoned political opportunist, Specter saw the writing on the wall that he was likely on his way to a Republican primary loss in next year’s election.

So, is he in Washington to fight for Pennsylvanians?  A political party?  Or, himself?

Of course, this gives Democrats the “magic number” (after the eventual likely seating of MN’s Al Franken), but they’ll still have the same votes on some issues and not on others.

Senator Jim DeMint sums up exactly how I feel about the Specter switch.

“I would rather have 30 Republicans in the Senate who really believe in principles of limited government, free markets, free people, than to have 60 that don’t have a set of beliefs.”

The HotAir Specter timeline is here.

Michelle Malkin has more on the flip-flop here.

Published in: on April 28, 2009 at 8:14 pm  Comments (1)  

Proof Obama Lives in a Pre 9/11 World

From Michelle Malkin,

The Obama administration is doing their best to keep New Yorkers on their toes:

An Air Force fighter jet and one of President Barack Obama’s official planes on Monday flew low over the Statue of Liberty in an approved photo opportunity that startled some New Yorkers who have memories of the September 11 attacks.

New York City officials notified some businesses but not all city agencies or the general public. People in New York remain sensitive to such incidents in lower Manhattan, site of the 2001 attacks involving hijacked airliners that destroyed the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center.

Many people left their buildings, and stock prices extended losses at the time.

The U.S. Air Force, which operates the president’s plane, said the “aerial photo mission” involved an F-16 fighter jet escort and one of the Boeing 747s designated as Air Force One when the president is aboard. Obama was not on board.

Police said federal authorities told them not to disclose the information ahead of time but to direct inquiries to the Federal Aviation Administration.

Mayor Bloomberg is reported to be “furious” — either because most people weren’t informed of the fly-by, or that he found out the plane was carrying foods loaded with trans fats.

Look for Obama’s people to claim it was a selfless gesture on the part of the president to take New Yorkers minds off the swine flu.

Click the pic below to watch the CBS 2 story on the ill-timed buzz of Lady Liberty:

As for the environmental impact of this photo-op, we’ll have to consult the “carbon footprint calculator” — though it can’t be nearly as bad as “Hurricane Latrina” that blew through DC on Inauguration Day.

Published in: on April 27, 2009 at 9:28 pm  Comments (2)  

Blingin’ the HOPE

I’ll admit I’m not a big JCPenney shopper, but that won’t stop me from saying I won’t be buying anything there.

Of course, in the spirit of capitalism, more power to ’em if they can earn a buck from the Obamania-collecting suckers.

Or to quote a commenter to this HotAir.com item,

I have no problem with someone trying to make a buck or two, that’s what capitalisms all about. However, I will definitely not be one of those from whom Penny will be getting that buck or two.

Besides, these pieces of jewelry, much like Che shirts, make it easier to spot the idiots.


Published in: on April 25, 2009 at 7:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

Will We Finally Get Serious About Our Borders?

From Michelle Malkin,

The deadly flu strain sweeping across Mexico and into the U.S. has world health experts sounding the alarm bells. Mexico City has been shut down. Officials are advising citizens there to wear masks. There’s talk of a pandemic. California and Texas have seen several reported cases, but no deaths in the U.S.


A new flu strain that has killed up to 68 people in Mexico could become a pandemic, the World Health Organization warned on Saturday, as health experts tried to track the disease’s spread.

I’ve blogged for years about the spread of contagious diseases from around the world into the U.S. as a result of uncontrolled immigration. We’ve heard for years from reckless open-borders ideologues who continue to insist there’s nothing to worry about. And we’ve heard for years that calling any attention to the dangers of allowing untold numbers of people to pass across our borders and through our other ports of entry without proper medical screening — as required of every legal visitor/immigrant to this country — is RAAAACIST.

A NYC prep school saw 75 students fall ill on Friday and health officials are testing to see if it’s the new strain of swine flu.

9/11 didn’t convince the open-borders zealots to put down their race cards and confront reality.

Maybe the threat of their sons or daughters contracting a deadly virus spread from south of the border to their Manhattan prep schools will.

Published in: on April 25, 2009 at 7:39 pm  Comments (2)  

“If T-Pain Ran CNN”

Spotted this hilarious clip at HotAir.com,

It’s the weekend.


Published in: on April 25, 2009 at 7:21 pm  Leave a Comment