What Atheists and Evolutionists Don’t Understand about Intelligent Design

A new young pastor and his wife arrived in October excited about their opportunities, but when they saw the church, it was run down and needing much work. They set a goal to have everything done in time to have their first service on Christmas Eve.

They were ahead of schedule but on December 19th a rainstorm hit the area that lasted for two days. The pastor went to the church and his heart sank. The roof leaked, causing a large area of plaster to fall off the front wall of the sanctuary. The pastor cleaned up the mess and anticipated postponing the Christmas Eve service.

Heading home, he saw a local business was having a sale for charity, so he stopped in. One of the items was a beautiful handmade, ivory colored, crocheted tablecloth with fine colors and a Cross embroidered right in the center– just the right size to cover the hole in the front wall. He bought it and headed back to the church.

It was starting to snow. An older woman running to catch the bus, missed it. The pastor invited her to wait in the warm church for the next bus. The pastor got a ladder, hangers to put up the wall tapestry, but then he noticed the woman walking down the aisle. “Pastor, where did you get that tablecloth?”

The pastor explained. The woman asked him to check the lower right corner to see if the initials, E.B.G. were crocheted into it there. They were. These were the initials of the woman, and she had made this tablecloth 35 years before, in Austria.

The woman could hardly believe it as the pastor told how he had just gotten “The Tablecloth”. The woman explained that before the war she and her husband were well-to-do people in Austria. When the Nazis came, she was forced to leave. Her husband was going to follow her but he was captured and sent to prison. She never saw her husband or home again.

The pastor wanted to give her the tablecloth; but she made the pastor keep it for the church. The pastor insisted on driving her home. That was the least he could do. She lived on the other side of Staten Island and was only in Brooklyn for the day for a housecleaning job.

What a wonderful service they had Christmas Eve. The church was almost full. The music and the spirit were great. At the end of the service, the pastor and his wife greeted everyone at the door and many said that they would return. One older man, whom the pastor recognized from the neighborhood continued to sit in one of the pews and stare, and the pastor wondered why he wasn’t leaving.

The man asked him where he got the tablecloth on the front wall because it was identical to one that his wife had made years ago when they lived in Austria before the war and how could there be two tablecloths so much alike? He told the pastor how the Nazis came and he forced his wife to flee to safety and he was going to follow, but was arrested and put in a prison. He never saw his wife or home again in 35 years.

The pastor asked him if he would allow him to take him for a little ride. They drove to Staten Island to where the pastor had taken the woman three days earlier. He helped the man climb the three flights of stairs to the woman’s apartment, knocked on the door and he saw the greatest Christmas reunion he could ever imagine!

EDITORS NOTE: This column is by Pastor Rob Reid and was edited by Richard Ruhling. To learn more visit: http://ChooseABetterDestiny.com.

The World’s Climate Change Mafia Meet in Peru

To understand all the talk of “climate change” you must understand that everything and everyone involved—except for those of us who debunk the lies—are engaged in a criminal enterprise to transfer billions from industrialized nations to those who have failed to provide a thriving economy, often because they are run by dictators or corrupt governments who skim the money for themselves.

The lies being inflicted on Americans include Obama’s “war on coal” that is shutting down coal-fired plants that affordably and efficiently produce the electricity the nation needs, along with the six-year delay of the Keystone XL pipeline. Add in the thousands of Environmental Protection Agency regulations affecting our manufacturing, business and agricultural sectors and the price we are paying is huge.

At its heart, environmentalism hates capitalism.

One of the worst parts of this scam to take from the rich and give to the poor—otherwise known as “redistribution”—is the way the world’s media have played along since 1992 when the first Earth Summit was held in Rio. The perpetrators are headquartered in the United Nations, home to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that sets the agenda.

While the 20th session of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s Conference of Parties meets in Lima, Peru this week, perhaps the most egregious and outrageous example of journalism was the December 2nd Associated Press article, “Hotter, Weirder: How Climate Change and Changed the Earth.” It is not attributed to a specific reporter; perhaps because it is filled with lies from start to finish.

It starts with the biggest lie of all: “WASHINGTON (AP) — In the more than two decades since world leaders first got together to try to solve global warming, life on Earth has changed, not just the climate. It’s gotten hotter, more polluted with heat-trapping gases, more crowded and just downright wilder.”

The Earth is in the 19th year of a natural cooling cycle, the result of a comparable cycle on the Sun which is producing less radiation to warm the planet. What astounds anyone who knows this is the article’s assertion that “It’s almost a sure thing that 2014 will go down as the hottest year in 135 years of record keeping, meteorologists at NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center say. If so, this will be the sixth time since 1992 that the world set or tied a new annual record for the warmest year.”

Would government agencies that are beholden to the existing administration for their budgets lie to the public? Yes, they would. While all fifty states experienced freezing weather within the past month, we are still being told that 2014 set new records for warmth. To borrow a phrase from Jonathan Gruber, the architect of ObamaCare, the government can tell “stupid” voters and others anything it wants in order to achieve its goals.

For the record, in 2013 and much of 2014, there have been record low numbers of tornadoes and hurricanes. There was a record gain in Arctic and Antarctic ice. There was no change in the rate of sea level rise; something measured in millimeters. The weather is the weather and that includes dramatic events such as blizzards or droughts, but it is hardly uniform. Depending on where you live on planet Earth, you will experience it differently on any given day.

As representatives of 190 climate mafia meet in Peru, you will be given data about carbon dioxide (CO2). The AP article cites increases of “60 percent.” If that were true, it would be good news. All vegetation on Earth depends on CO2, just as humans and other living creatures depend on oxygen. More CO2 means healthier forests and greater crop yields, an agricultural bonus in a world that needs to feed seven billion people. But it’s not true. Nor is the claim that the mere 0.04% of CO2 in the Earth’s atmosphere traps so much heat we’re all going to die. It doesn’t and most of us will die of old age.

As Amy Ridenour of the National Center for Public Policy Research reported in June, “The U.S. already leads the world in CO2 reductions and is a great role model. U.S. energy-related CO2 emissions fell 12.6 percent between 2005 and 2012, thanks to technology and conservation. Worldwide, CO2 emissions increased by 17.7 percent during the same period.” That’s a far cry from the AP claim of 60 percent.

The Peru conference is another effort to impose a global tax on “carbon” and to increase the UN’s “Climate Fund” to which some nations have pledged $9.3 billion. To put this in perspective, the United States just set a new record of $18 TRILLION in debt and cannot afford to be pledging money to that fund or any other fund. Most of that debt has been incurred during the one and a half terms of Barack Obama who just happens to be telling everyone that “climate change” is the greatest threat to all life on Earth.

“Climate change” is what the 4.5 billion-year-old Earth has been doing during all that time and will continue to do. Humans experience it as the “weather” which is measured in days and weeks while climate is measured in units not less than thirty years and more often in centuries. Today’s weather prediction is good for, at best, five days and is subject to change at any time.

As for all those claims about “global warming” it’s worth keeping in mind that not one of the computer models cited to prove it has been accurate. There isn’t a model or a computer big enough to take in all the many elements that compose the weather anywhere and everywhere on Earth. The weather is always in a state of flux and change, just as the temperatures during any hour of the day are in a stage of change.
Here’s a bit of advice. Do not believe anything that comes out of the UN conference because, scientifically speaking, it will be a lie. And don’t believe anything the Associated Press reports on “climate change” because that too must automatically be regarded as a lie as well.

Whatever Barack Obama has to say about “climate change” (formerly known as “global warming”) is a lie. It would be nice to have a President and a government we could trust.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Texas Citizens Cleanse anti-American Bias from Public School Textbooks

On Friday, November 21st something monumental happened in Austin, Texas at the State Board of Education.  The Truth in Texas Textbooks (TTT) Coalition changed the perception that average citizens could have a major impact on the content of textbooks for their children.  TTT is a grass roots organization composed of average concerned citizens formed in October 2013 with a simple mission: to insure the proposed social studies textbooks are as error free as possible.

What did these 100 unpaid volunteers do?   They corrected inaccurate or misleading textbooks for 5 million Texas children and found over 1500 errors in 32 textbooks.

These are just a small sample of the errors found:

  • Publishers attempted to push the softer definition of “jihad” as the “struggle to become a better person”. TTT pointed out the facts:  the Quran, Hadith’s (Islamic scholar approved collections of Muhammad’s life) and Mohammad’s biography defines jihad as “violence against infidels in the name of Allah”.  Attempts to re-define is “spin” and not based upon original Islamic sources.
  • Conditions in Cuba are painted as highly beneficial for young people from a healthcare and education standpoint.  Misleading information and half-truths is how TTT characterized this description of life in Cuba with details of other reports and sources providing facts justifying TTT’s position.
  • “It’s easy to get depressed about Climate Change.”Telling a child what emotions to have on a topic is “agenda building”. Only one side of the issue was told. TTT urged both sides but publishers chose to pull the book as the solution. 
  • Many publishers routinely referred to the U.S. form of government as a “democracy”.  The word “democracy” is not found in the constitution nor in any of the 50 state constitutions.  Our form of government is a constitutional republic.  The Pledge of Allegiance to the flag is to the Republic for which it stands, not to the democracy for which it stands.
  • Publishers claimed in several instances that Muslims were the original inhabitants of the area we know of as Israel. TTT pointed out Jews inhabited this area hundreds of years before Islam existed.
  • Multiple publishers left out the terms “Islamic jihadist”, “Muslim terrorists” even when the attackers used these terms in describing themselves; no mention that the Barbary pirates were Muslims, no mention the 911 hijackers were Islamic jihadists, the absence of the word “Islamic” when describing the terroristsin the 1983 Lebanon Marine Barrack attacks. If the terrorists know who they are, why won’t publishers use those same terms?
  • Gorbachev had more to do with the Berlin Wall falling than Ronald Reagan according to one publisher; Communism deficiencies downplayed while Western democracies marginalized; TTT was able to get re-writes on these and many other distorted areas.

Publishers attempted to claim many TTT entries were not “errors” but request for “additional content”.  A half-truth or omission of fact does requires additional content for the student to know the “full truth”, not a partial truth. Fortunately the publishers at the direction of the SBOE began to make changes.

November 21, the SBOE approved the final selection of textbooks. One publisher’s entire collection of textbooks was removed from the approval process primarily due to their failure to respond to TTT’s inputs.

Our efforts won’t stop until we analyze all of the publisher’s replies and post them on our website at www.truthintexasttextbooks.com. The public can see the final grade we put on each textbook based upon the Texas Essential Knowledge Skills (TEKS) compliance rate and how many of the 1500 errors are corrected.

The books will be rated as “Good”, “Acceptable”, “Poor” or “Worse”. This simple report card rating will be easy to understand and assist parents, teachers and school board members as they analyze the books to determine the best textbooks for their children.

Our final report will be out for local school districts (1200+ school districts) as they begin reviewing the 95 social studies textbooks for purchase beginning in early January 2015.  Visiting TTT’s website in the coming weeks will provide interested citizens information on the best textbooks for their children.  Each of the 32 reviews can be found here.

The secret to our success was average citizens who took the time to get trained, dedicate time to the project, accept criticism of their work and work together as a team following TTT procedures.  I can never thank them enough or pass along all the accolades passed to me for their work.

The process has been so effective eight other states have asked for TTT’s protocols to duplicate in their states. Changing textbooks requires entering the review cycle at the right time with the right team. A public conference call for any interested individuals or groups who want more information is scheduled for late January 2015. More details on precise time and call-in information will be on our website beginning in early January 2015.

Publishers want to sell books but making changes before they go to print is the key versus waiting for them to get on the shelves. Please get involved in your children’s future and education, these textbooks are the pathway to their minds and our future.

You can see the testimony of several of our volunteers and the leadership of TTT by going to these YouTube links:

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is courtesy of Fox News.

20 Questions to Ask Your Evolution Professor — Who Can’t Explain Intelligent Design

  1. How did we get such nicely rounded spheres from a Big Bang that should have given jagged rocks?
  2. How did all the planets come into orbit after such an explosion?
  3. Why do the planets vary in distance from the sun so greatly, and still stay in orbit?
  4. With more than 100 moons for the planets (Jupiter having 63), how did they come to orbit planets if they didn’t explode from them, and what evidence would we have that our moon exploded from earth, or where did it come from? Can we see significance to its orbit giving us our months?
  5. Isn’t it strange that these huge heavenly bodies don’t collide, and that we can set our time by them?
  6. How did earth develop its rotation so that we have day and night, and don’t fry on one side or freeze on the other?
  7. Was it just chance that earth has all the ingredients necessary for life?
  8. If we exploded off the sun, where did we get our atmosphere that was needed to support life?
  9. How would an explosion from the sun give us all the elements we see on the atomic chart?
  10. What would be the mathematical probability of an explosion in a junk yard giving us a jumbo jet? (That would be far easier than an explosion giving us any form of life)
  11. The 2nd Law of Thermodynamics says the energy systems tend to run down unless acted upon by an outside source. What is the Source that keeps our universe from becoming like a city dump?
  12. Darwin assumed that future discoveries would reveal “missing links” in the evolutionary chain, but after 150 years, we are still waiting. Where are the missing links, or could Darwin have been wrong?
  13. Living organisms have systems intricately complex and dependent on all parts to be functioning as a whole. Did they all evolve simultaneously?
  14. Wouldn’t primitive man have bled to death from a cut without the blood clotting mechanism with its cascade of reactions working from the beginning?
  15. Did mammals all evolve into male and female simultaneously so that after billions of years, they both arrived on the scene at the same time and could reproduce?
  16. With water so essential to life, how did earth get its vast supply if we exploded off the sun?
  17. With atomic nuclei having protons of positive charge, what keeps them from repelling each other?
  18. Did everything in the universe come from nothing, or how did it all happen?
  19. Comparing tiny atoms with our gigantic solar systems, each with orbiting electrons or planets, it is not difficult to see similarity or design. Dare we say Intelligent Design?
  20. If we tore 100 pages out of a book and scrambled them, wouldn’t the chance of our picking them up in order blind-folded be better than all of the above happening by chance?

EvolutionIf we consider the complexity of the human body, DNA or the development of eyesight that we don’t even understand, shouldn’t we be honest enough to ask ourselves, Who is the Designer?

Does it matter? Or dare we ask? Why do some “scientists” become irate when they can’t answer simple questions? Why don’t we just admit that evolution is theory that offers their view of some facts, while other scientists also have evidence for their view? A growing number of scientists have faith in the Designer of all that we can see, like the beauty of a sunset, or hear, like the song of a bird, or enjoy the food we eat.

An award-winning website offering abundant scientific support for Creation is at http://pathlights.com/ce_encyclopedia/creation-encyclopediaTOC.html. Another website offering excellent support for instantaneous Creation is at http://Halos.com.

A philosopher once said that religion is gratitude. Why not give it back to the Source and live like we appreciate what we’ve been given? The first page of the Bible helps us appreciate God as the Source, and He even invented sex! These are just a few starters for us to want to know Him better. And no, the #1 best-seller of all times is not fiction or myth–the greatest Person in history (His Story) that divided BC from AD also quoted from Genesis.

EDITORS NOTE: One of Dr. Ruhling’s websites is at http://ChooseABetterDestiny.com and he believes we have a far higher destiny that if we came from germs, mollusks and apes, but first we must endure the Fall of America…http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00L1V2I84

Historic Global Temperature Drop Predicted

The Space and Science Research Corporation (SSRC) announced an important set of 7 climate change predictions dealing with the coming cold climate epoch that will dominate global temperatures for the next thirty years.

According to analysis of the most reliable solar activity trends and climate models based on the Relational Cycle Theory (RC Theory), the SSRC concludes the following:

  1. The Earth is about to begin a steep drop in global temperatures off its present global temperature plateau. This plateau has been caused by the absence of growth in global temperatures for 18 years, the start of global cooling in the atmosphere and the oceans, and the end of a short period of moderate solar heating from an unusually active secondary peak in solar cycle #24.
  2. Average global atmospheric and oceanic temperatures will drop significantly beginning between 2015 and 2016 and will continue with only temporary reversals until they stabilize during a long cold temperature base lasting most of the 2030’s and 2040’s. The bottom of the next global cold climate caused by a “solar hibernation” (a pronounced reduction in warming energy coming from the Sun) is expected to be reached by the year 2031.
  3. The predicted temperature decline will continue for the next fifteen years and will likely be the steepest ever recorded in human history, discounting past short-duration volcanic events.
  4. Global average temperatures during the 2030’s will reach a level of at least 1.5° C lower than the peak temperature year of the past 100 years established in 1998. The temperatures during the 2030’s will correspond roughly to that observed from 1793 to 1830, shortly after the founding of the United States of America. This average lower global temperature of 1.5° C on average, translates to declines in temperatures that will be devastating for crop growing regions in the mid latitudes of the planet.

The 2030’s and 2040’s may be even colder, much colder than indicated in the predictions above. The SSRC has already predicted two scenarios for this period as documented in its Global Climate Status Report (GCSR). The first expected scenario is one similar to 1793 to 1830. The second is one corresponding to the “Little Ice Age,” approximately from 1615 to 1745. This latter level of the coming cold climate has been predicted by climatologists at the Russian Academy of Sciences and others. Determination of which scenario will dominate can come as early as 2020 to 2023.

These periods of intense cold are also strongly associated with the largest earthquakes and especially the largest volcanic eruptions. Major volcanic eruptions can create a veil of dust and gas around the globe, blocking sunlight, thus adding to the intensity of the already existing cold period. This occurred during the last solar hibernation with the eruption of Mt. Tambora in 1815, in Indonesia – the largest eruption ever recorded. It was 100 times larger than the Mt. St. Helens eruption of May 18, 1980.

As previously predicted by the SSRC, substantial crop damage, social disruption, civil strife, and loss of life are expected to result from the significant reduction in the Earth’s temperatures which will enter its final phase of rapid decline beginning between 2015 and 2016. The SSRC believes energy and food shortages are likely to result from the long lasting and extreme cold period in part, because agricultural conglomerates and utility companies are not factoring this potentially dangerous new cold epoch into their future food production and power
requirements.

The above new predictions by the SSRC and its President Mr. John Casey are echoed by other experts.

Dr. Dong Choi, Director of Research for the International Earthquake and Volcano Prediction Center (IEVPC), and Editor of the New Concepts in Global Tectonics (NCGT) Journal, states:

“I support John Casey’s predictions on the arrival of a major cold period caused by a solar hibernation. We are also witnessing a major increase in earthquake activity represented by deep strong quakes throughout the world since 1990, which perfectly matches the declining period of solar activity.”

From his field research location on the island of Svalbard, between Norway and the North Pole, is this comment by Dr. Ole Humlum, Glaciologist, Geomorphologist, and Professor of Physical Geography at the University of Oslo notes:

“These latest series of predictions from the SSRC highlights the growing importance for politicians to formulate a plan B rapidly, given the likely possibility that their plan A (based on future warming as forecasted by CO2-driven climate models) will fail thoroughly in the years to come. The prospect of a significant decline of agricultural production due to lower temperatures is very disturbing.”

Greenhouse Gas Deal with China is an Attack on the American Economy

Ignore the cheers from the White House, the State Department, Mother Jones, and elsewhere over the U.S.-China greenhouse gas agreement. It’s simply another attack on abundant American energy and the economy.

Secretary of State John Kerry detailed the deal in the New York Times: “For the first time China is announcing a peak year for its carbon emissions – around 2030 – along with a commitment to try to reach the peak earlier.” In exchange, the “United States intends to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions by 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025.”

Here are a few points:

1. Reason’s Ronald Bailey estimates how much the United States will have to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions under the agreement:

In 2005, the U.S. emitted the equivalent of 7.26 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide. So cutting emissions by 28 percent by 2025 implies emissions of 5.23 gigatonnes in 2025, which is about the amount that the U.S. emitted in 1992. Assuming that Chinese emissions did peak in 2030, the country could by then be emitting three times more than the U.S.

2. China’s peak emissions year will be “around” 2030? Does that mean 2031, 2035, 2040? For international commitments to be meaningful and effective, they need to be precise. To put it mildly, “around” is not very precise.

3. This agreement is nonbinding and according to Reuters’ analysis is loaded with nebulous “intentions”:

The joint announcement employs language very carefully. Throughout, the operative word is “intend” or “intention”, which makes clear the statement is not meant to create any new obligations.

China’s 2030 emissions target is set in terms of a date but says nothing about the level at which emissions will peak.

4. Did China really agree to something that it expects will happen anyway? Ben White in Politico’s Morning Moneypoints to a 2012 story in The Guardian:

[B]arring any significant changes in policy, China’s emissions will rise until around 2030 – when the country’s urbanisation peaks, and its population growth slows – and then begins to fall.

5. Along those same lines, under the International Energy Agency’s baseline scenario (IEA-NPS) of greenhouse gas reductions, China’s emissions are projected to peak by 2030 anyway [see slide 17].

6. There’s plenty of international skepticism. A German newspaper commented on the deal, “[It’s] as if a grizzly bear and tiger discuss how the world can be more vegetarian.”

Add this all up and you have a one-sided agreement in China’s favor, as Karen Harbert, president of the U.S. Chamber’s Institute for 21st Century Energy said in a statement:

If actually implemented, this agreement would give an unfair advantage to Chinese manufacturers while forcing dramatic changes to America’s energy supply that will raise prices, threaten reliability, and increase the burden on hard working American families.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of workers moving coal out from a mine in Shanxi Province, China. China is the largest producer and consumer of coal in the world. Photo credit: Nelson Ching/Bloomberg.

Obama’s Cruel and Costly Climate Hoax

The intense cold that many Americans are encountering arrives more than a month before the official start of winter on December 21.

To discuss this, we need to keep in mind that weather is what is occurring now. Climate is measured over longer periods, the minimum of which is thirty years and, beyond that, centuries.

We are colder these days because the Earth has been in a cooling cycle for 19 years and that cycle is based entirely on the Sun which has been radiating less heat for the same period of time.

Describing the role of the Sun, Australian geologist, Ian Plimer, said, “There is a big thermonuclear reactor in the sky that emits huge amounts of energy to the Earth…The Sun provides the energy for photosynthesis. The Sun is the bringer of life to Earth. If the Sun were more energetic the oceans would boil. If the Sun were less energetic the oceans would freeze and all life on Earth would be destroyed.”

We don’t control the Sun. Or the climate. It controls us.

Sun & EarthConsider the fact that the Sun has a diameter of 865,000 miles. The Earth’s diameter is 7,917.5 miles. Thus, the Sun’s diameter is 109 times greater than the Earth’s. Carbon dioxide is barely 0.04% of the Earth’s atmosphere. Reducing it as the U.S.-China agreement proposes would have zero effect on the Earth’s climate.

We not only can, but should ignore the blatant lies of President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, both of whom have been saying things about “climate change” without a scintilla of science to back them up. They’re not alone, however. In August, the U.N. Climate Chief, Christiana Figueres, warned of climate “chaos” in 500 days and told the World Health Organization that climate change was on a par with the outbreak of Ebola as a public health emergency.

It was big news on November 11 when The Wall Street Journal’s lead story on its front page reported that “The U.S. and China unveiled long-term plans to curb emissions of carbon dioxide and other gases linked to climate change, a surprise move aimed at kick-starting a new round of international climate negotiations and blunting domestic opposition to cuts in both countries.”

Someone needs to tell the Wall Street Journal there is no “climate change” that is not entirely NATURAL and unrelated to anything humans are doing.

The announcement plays into the longtime efforts of the environmental movement to impose energy limits on the world’s population. Similar limits will be called for when climate talks are launched in December by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in Lima, Peru.

Why the leaders of nations keep calling for limits that can only result in the reduction of energy production, the loss of economic benefits from industrial activity and the jobs it provides, and the modern lifestyle of advanced nations is one of life’s great mysteries.

If you really disliked America, you would no doubt pursue President Obama’s anti-energy agenda. That agenda is expressed by a series of climate and pollution measures that an article in Politico.com says “rivals any presidential environmental actions of the past quarter-century—a reality check for Republicans who think last week’s election gave them a mandate to end what they call the White House’s ‘War on Coal.’”

AA - Cold WeekendThe authors of the Politico.com article, Andrew Restuccia and Erica Martinson, note that Obama’s assault on the nation is “Tied to court-ordered deadlines, legal mandates and international climate talks” over the next two months, all in the name of a climate change “And incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will have few options for stopping the onslaught, though Republicans may be able to slow pieces of it.”

“The coming rollout includes a Dec. 1 proposal by EPA to tighten limits on smog-causing ozone, which business groups say could be the costliest federal regulation of all time; a final rule Dec. 19 for clamping down on disposal of power plants’ toxic coal cash; the Jan. 1 start date for a long-debated rule prohibiting states from polluting the air of their downwind neighbors; and a Jan. 8 deadline for issuing a final rule restricting greenhouse gas emissions from future power plants. That last rule is a centerpiece of Obama’s most ambitious environmental effort, the big plan for combating climate change that he announced at Georgetown University in June 2013.”

This vile assault flies in the face of actual climate trends: record low tornadoes record low hurricanes, record gain in Arctic ice, record amount of Antarctic ice, no change in the rate of sea level rise, no evidence of a Greenland meltdown, and again no warming for 19 years.

As this and future winters turn colder, arrive sooner and stay around longer, Americans will be affected by the reduction of coal-fired plants that generate electrical power. The nation will encounter blizzards that will leave some homeowners and apartment dwellers without heat. It is predictable that some will die.

A cruel and costly climate hoax is being perpetrated by President Obama and, in particular, by the Environmental Protection Agency. The new Congress must take whatever action it can to reverse and stop the harm that it represents; people’s jobs and lives depend on it.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

RELATED ARTICLE: Obama Pledges $3 Billion to Aid… Climate Change

Welcome to EbolaCare — but the Website is Down

A well known phenomenon in the animal kingdom is that when taking over a new pride, a lion will sometimes kill all the cubs. We don’t know exactly what kind of feeling drives him in this bloody act, but there’s obviously a lack of attachment. Suffice it to say the problem can be summed up thus: it’s not his family.

America’s pride is falling. And few things illustrate this better than the open-borders mentality that has allowed foreigners to bring diseases — most notably Ebola but also EV-D68 and others — into our country.

There was a time when a threat such as Ebola would have inspired travel bans reflexively. Not today. In this enlightened age, Barack Obama and underlings such as CDC director Tom Frieden tell us, with a straight face, that such measures just wouldn’t work. They also claim that banning commercial flights would frustrate efforts to aid Ebola-affected nations and thus increase the long-term chances of an epidemic in the U.S.

Space constraints preclude me from exploring every detail of their argument, but the bottom line is that it’s fallacious. A travel ban combined with a policy of issuing no visas to citizens from affected nations, a prohibition against entry by any foreign national holding a passport with a stamp from one of them, and a mandatory quarantine for Americans returning from such countries absolutely would work. No, it wouldn’t reduce the chances of more Ebola cases reaching our shores to zero, but such a requirement is unreasonable. We can’t eliminate all murder, but we still see fit to minimize it by having necessary laws, police and a criminal-justice system.

As for aid, it goes without saying that medical professionals and other emergency workers would be granted travel clearance and that charter and military planes could ferry them where they needed to go. Moreover, we’ve isolated Americans who contracted Ebola, and no one claims it prevented us from giving them sufficient treatment.

In fact, the arguments against common sense and the common good are so obviously flawed that it’s clear they are not reasons, but rationalizations. So what really explains our leaders’ common senselessness? National Review’s Mark Krikorian put it well last month:

Much of our political class is simply uncomfortable with the idea that border and immigration controls should be used vigorously and unapologetically to protect Americans. You can hear the objections now: It would be xenophobic, it might stigmatize West Africans, those countries will object to our State Department that they’re being discriminated against.

This is what it boils down to. And there’s a reason why people such as Barack Obama don’t believe in using immigration controls “vigorously and unapologetically to protect Americans.”

People such as Obama are not American.

This has nothing to do with theories about where Obama was born; as Thomas Sowell recently pointed out, native American Benedict Arnold is one of our most infamous traitors, while people born overseas have sometimes risked their necks to defend America. Nor does it even just concern Obama, as the phenomenon in question is exhibited by millions. What it has to do with is attitude.

This brings me to an October Forbes article by evolutionary biologist J.V. Chamary in which he inveighs against travel bans, calling the desire for them understandable but “selfish.” Born in France to parents from Mauritius and now living in the U.K., Chamary is the epitome of the attitude in question; he’s an internationalist, a philanderer of nations and a citizen of the world. And the thinking goes like this: we’re all just people, whether in Sacramento or Sierra Leone, Livermore or Liberia. Why should “my” country’s needs be elevated above another’s? This is the “intellectual” point of view, the conclusion someone arrives at upon thinking deeply and recognizing the truth of George Bernard Shaw’s statement, “Patriotism is the belief your country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it.”

Of course, it warrants noting that the affected West African nations have behaved just as “selfishly,” sometimes quarantining large areas within their borders to contain the Ebola. And neighboring African countries have been “selfish” enough to completely isolate the affected nations. We also might wonder how selfish it actually is if our concern is for others, our fellow Americans. But, no matter, Chamary has a point.

Not a good point — but a point.

Now let’s see if he actually believes it.

An easy way to find out is to ask: would you apply the same unselfish standard to your home? Would you temporarily house a couple of the people from affected nations who’ve been allowed to enter the U.S., thus exposing your children to them on a long-term basis?

When I briefly corresponded with Chamary and asked the above, his said it was a false dilemma that he was “unwilling to waste time addressing.” But it’s sufficiently analogous. Everything said about foreigners relative to Americans applies to outsiders relative to family members. We’re all just people; “undocumented family members” are children of God just like your documented family members. And what is God’s perspective (atheists can view this as a thought exercise), which is the highest perspective? He doesn’t gaze upon our blue orb and deem the Smiths more important than the Johnsons. Why, we could even say that “family patriotism is the belief your family should be prioritized over all other families because you were born in it,” couldn’t we, Mr. Barack Bernard Chamary? So why subordinate outsiders’ needs to your family’s?

This analogy is especially apt because a nation is an extension of the tribe, which in turn is an extension of the family. Yet it’s safe to say that Chamary, Obama and their fellow travelers would not endanger their families as they have the country. Why the different standards?

I suggest that their “enlightened,” citizen-of-the-world perspective isn’t the fruits of intellectualism at all, but is merely what feels right. The difference is that they’re emotionally attached to their families.

They’re not emotionally attached to America.

This is for a simple reason.

America is not their family.

Their pride lies elsewhere

Such people are not just internationalists; they sometimes feel more of a kinship with foreign nations than the one whose passport they happen to carry. And in the case of Obama, the antipathy for his passport place is so profound that he aims to eat the cubs. Or, at least, replace them via immigration.

This is why, even though a nation without secure borders is like a house without walls, Obama will keep his walls and open our borders. For some Americans this will mean death from disease and at the hands of illegal-alien criminals, but Obama doesn’t care. Lions, even cowardly ones, do what they do. And we’re not his family.

Contact Selwyn Duke, follow him on Twitter or log on to SelwynDuke.com

The New Frontier: Peer technologies are enabling self-government in the cloud by Max Borders

Today there is no territory left to settle, but human freedom is about to enjoy a renaissance.

Imagine we’re standing on a ridge. We look out on a valley awash in sunlight — surveyors contemplating a new city. We squint and ask: What will it look like? Will it have its own rules, culture, and commercial life? Will it be a bustling metropolis or a constellation of villages?

The Internet has only been with us for about 20 years. If the Northwest Ordinance and the Homestead Acts were legal sanction for expansion across the American continent, networking technologies are invitations for people both to spread out and to connect with others in novel ways. This opportunity has important implications.

For much of history, we have thought of the law and the land as being inseparable, particularly as the conquerors were so often the lawgivers. Not anymore. For the first time, jurisdiction and territory can be separated to a great degree thanks to innovation.

So many of the administrative functions of jurisdiction can increasingly be found in the cloud. It’s early, yes. The network is fragile. But we will soon be able to pass in and out of legal systems, selecting those that benefit us, employing true self-government. It is time to follow Thoreau, who in Civil Disobedience asked, “Is a democracy, such as we know it, the last improvement possible in government?”

Already, we can buy and sell using cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin. We can take Lyft downtown, bypassing obsolete local ordinances on the way. Google and Apple are selling us privacy again. These are just the first brushfires of a new form of social coordination in which technology itself makes it possible to upgrade our social operating systems.

Peer-to-peer interaction means we’re a nation of joiners again — on steroids. It seemed for a while we had lost the republic to special interests. But the hopeless calculus of cronyism — concentrated benefits and dispersed costs — is being flipped on its head. Internetworking makes it so we’re enjoying the fruits of the sharing economy — quite rapidly, in fact. Cronies and officials are finding it hard to play catch up.

New constituencies are forming around these new benefits. Special interests that once squeaked to get oil are confronted by battalions bearing smart phones. Citizens are voting more with their dollars and their devices, fed up with leaving prayers in the voting booth. Free association is now ensured by design, not by statute.

Technology that changes the incentives can change the institutions. The rules and regulations we currently live under came out of our democratic operating system (DOS). It used to be that these institutions shaped our incentives to a great degree. Now we have ways of coordinating our activities that go right around state intermediaries, corporate parasites, and moribund laws.

The incentives for social change are strong, so strong that the gales of creative destruction can finally blow apart much of the state apparatus, which seemed impervious to reform. And that’s a good thing for a self-governing people.

That celebrated old historian Frederick Jackson Turner summed up his famous treatise on the American West, agreeing — perhaps despite himself — that the people of the frontier had been moving away from hierarchy:

In spite of environment, and in spite of custom, each frontier did indeed furnish a new field of opportunity, a gate of escape from the bondage of the past; and freshness, and confidence, and scorn of older society, impatience of its restraints and its ideas, and indifference to its lessons, have accompanied the frontier.

But in 1893, as Turner wrote that passage, the frontier had already closed.

Today, the seekers and strivers have reopened the frontier, no longer a peculiarly American terrain. It’s a space beyond nation or territory — without end and without the need for Caesar’s imprimatur. As people start to gather there, there will be every form of vice, as in the past. But there will also be rapid advance and innovative wonders. Everything will be subject to continuous trial, error, and revision. And paradoxically, that infinite space in which we can spread out and try new things allows us to be closer than ever before.

We’re becoming cultural cosmopolitans, radical communitarians, and standard bearers for a right of exit. Most importantly, we’re freer than ever before. As my colleague Jeffrey Tucker writes on the workers’ revolution, “This whole approach might be considered a very advanced stage of capitalism in which third parties exercise ever less power over who can and cannot participate.”

In this infinite space, there will be little room for political progressives with big plans. They’ll find it difficult to impose hierarchy on the new frontier folk who will run among network nodes. The progressive program, as such, will dwindle down to what Steven B. Johnson calls “peer progressivism.”

Rejecting the dirigisme of today’s progressives, Johnson writes:

We don’t think that everything in modern life should be re-engineered to follow the “logic of the Internet.” We just think that society has long benefited from non-market forms of open collaboration, and that there aren’t enough voices in the current political conversation reminding us of those benefits.

Tocqueville couldn’t have said it any better. If such becomes the sum of tomorrow’s progressivism, we might all be headed for a great convergence, where once we were as stark and separate as red and blue.

MaxBordersVEsmlABOUT MAX BORDERS

Max Borders is the editor of The Freeman and director of content for FEE. He is also co-founder of the event experience Voice & Exit and author of Superwealth: Why we should stop worrying about the gap between rich and poor.

High school students fight back against culture of death: Bold challenge at abortion clinic!

When it comes to standing up to the culture of death, a lot of people have given up on the youth of America. But don’t believe it!

The students at the Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic School in Still River, MA, out-perform most adult groups. They take activism right to the streets!


VIDEO of students and their “Prayer Vigil Challenge”. You can also see it on Vimeo HERE.

As a conservative Catholic school, they are determined to confront the horrific scourge of abortion. Unlike many pro-life groups, they don’t just hold meetings, put out literature, give some speeches, hold banquets, and raise money. They actually go to the abortion clinics. The older kids help counsel women who would otherwise make a deadly “choice” — and they all use the power of prayer. They make a difference!

In this wonderful video – made outside of a Planned Parenthood abortion clinic featuring the students themselves – they are challenging students from nearby schools to join them on the front lines.

In this video the students are right on the front lines!

These kids are very inspiring. They really get it. They are not afraid to talk about God and the religious basis of why they’re there. And they clearly understand the terrible things that secularism has done to society.

Prayer vigil near entrance of the Planned Parenthood abortion clinic.

That’s not all. For the last 25 years the school has provided what has become themost memorable float in the annual South Boston St. Patrick’s Day Parade – St. Patrick blessing the crowds — and the school band has also marched in the parade.

As we all know, in recent years many homosexual activist groups and liberal politicians have tried to intimidate schools, businesses, and others from participating in the parade. The liberal establishment is angry because the parade leaders have held fast to their Catholic beliefs and kept it a “family friendly” parade that excludes openly homosexual groups.

The annual Parade wouldn’t be the same without the school’s memorable float! [MassResistance photo]

They’re the real thing. The school even has a special dispensation from Rome to hold a daily Latin Mass!

A big part of this, of course, is the school’s principal, Br. Thomas Augustine. He is a pillar of strength and moral leadership in a time of unfortunate religious and cultural weakness. We wish there were a thousand more like him!

And like all moral heroes, Br. Thomas is hated by the Left. Earlier this year, the Boston Globe published an editorial personally attacking Br. Thomas after he wrote a letter to the editor taking an uncompromising stand supporting the Parade organizers’ right to hold their parade with real Catholic values.

We would encourage you to watch the video. The Resistance movement is alive and well!

P.S. – Br. Thomas reported to us that the video brought a great response to their challenge!

Voters Reject the Green Political Agenda

What the midterm voters wanted was an economy that returned to its average 3.3% annual growth since the end of World War II. For six years of the Obama presidency, growth has all but disappeared. In 2013, as measured by the World Bank, it was barely 1.9% That translated into a lack of jobs, stagnant middle class income, and what Obama correctly called the Great Recession, but could not end.

Instead, in the lead-up to the midterm elections, he was still talking about “climate change” as the greatest threat to the nation and the world. For the voters, however, climate change wasn’t even on its list of priorities and with good reason, there is nothing anyone or any nation can or should do about the great forces of nature that determine what the Earth’s climate will be; starting with the Sun.

The day after the elections two major environmental organizations, the Sierra Club and Friends of the Earth (FOE), wrote to their members. Their message was similar and their conclusions were absurd.

“The election’s over and the planet lost,” wrote Erich Pica, FOE president. “The next Congress will be controlled by politicians elected with millions of dollars of the Koch brothers’ oil money—putting at risk the vital environmental protections we’ve fought so hard to achieve.” FOE has more than 2 million activists in 75 nations including the U.S.

What Pica does not mention in his letter is the estimated $85 million spent on six Senate races by what The Hill described as “the nation’s top environmental groups including the League of Conservation Voters, the Sierra Club, the Environmental Defense Fund, the Natural Resources Defense Council, and billionaire Tom Steyer’s NextGen Climate…”

So the Koch brother’s money is evil, but environmental organizations’ money is okay?

As far as FOE’s Pica is concerned, “The truth is, President Obama hasn’t always done the right thing for the environment. He should have denied the Keystone Pipeline years ago, he should be rolling back unchecked fracking, and he should have taken stronger action on climate both at home and in international negotiations.”

FOE could care less about the thousands of jobs the Keystone pipeline would create, plus the revenue from refining the oil it would transport to the Gulf States. As for fracking, it is not “unchecked.” It has to be done within the context of safety and environmental laws. As for the climate, China and India are just two nations increasing the use of coal to generate the electrical power they need to stimulate industrialization and improve the lives of their citizens by bringing power where he has never been before.

Michael Brune, executive director of the Sierra Club, wrote that “Friends of Big Oil have taken control of the Senate” claiming they have “a 100-day action plan that reads like Big Oil’s wish list. Our opposition is about to have free reign to implement their anti-environment agenda. And approving the Keystone XL pipeline and destroying proposed environmental regulations top their list.”

Oh, really? If the polls and elections are any indicator, a lot of Americans want to see the pipeline construction. As for the “anti-environment agenda”, that too is pure fiction. What Americans oppose is the forced closure of electricity generation plants in the name of a global warming that is not happening. Or a climate change over which no government has any role or control.

To drive home his doom-and-gloom message, Brune added that “Rare species of wildlife already hanging by a threat will not survive this onslaught.” Consider the absurdity of the claim that a Republican controlled Congress will be responsible for species extinction. For good measure, Brune, like the FOE, mentioned the Koch brothers, labeling them “big polluters.” Since when is drilling for oil and providing it to a world that runs on it “pollution”? It’s not. It’s progress that benefits humanity.

Commenting on the elections, Dr. Jay Lehr, the Science Director of The Heartland Institute, a free market think tank, characterized them as “the repudiation of the President’s policies” and the nation’s political pundits all agree. Dr. Lehr called for “a bill to require the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline which has bipartisan support and has passed every environmental test.”

Dr. Lehr called on Congress to “require the government to open up public lands to environmentally safe mineral and energy exploration as well as speed up approval of permits to drill and mine for resources on already approved lands. This will ensure our resource independence in both areas for centuries to come.”

High on my list of priorities was reflected by Dr. Lehr’s call for Congress “to take charge of the funding of the Environmental Protection Agency which has gone rogue in efforts to impede virtually all economic development in our nation, and eventually phase out the EPA, passing on its responsibilities to a committee of the whole of our fifty state environmental protection agencies.”

A November 6 article, “Climate change supporters suffer losses”, published in The Hill, reported that “Despite millions spent to make climate change a wedge issue during the midterms, environmentally friendly candidates didn’t fare well on Election Day.” Even so, the Sierra Club’s Brune was quoted saying, “Public support is solidly behind action to tackle the climate crisis. While we have lost friends in Congress, we are gaining them in the streets, as our movement grows stronger and broader.” NOT!

Frances Beinecke, president of the Natural Resources Defense Council, echoed Brune’s empty boasts. “Whatever may have driven individual races, the American people want action on climate change.” NOT!

As far as the environment is concerned, it is way down on the list of the voter’s priorities and the change of leadership and control of Congress reflects that. The voters don’t want a lot of vapid, idiotic talk of climate change and other environmental fantasies. They want jobs. They want an economy that will provide them. They want a better future for themselves and their children. And whether they know it or not, they want a conservative approach to government.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

We Should Ban West Africans from Entering U.S.

I have had it with all the whining and complaining I am hearing from Africans regarding the growing demand from Americans to deny travel to the U.S. for Africans from Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea because of the Ebola epidemic that has infected those countries.

Let’s be clear: No one has a right to travel to the U.S. It is a privilege conferred upon would be travelers at the sole discretion of the U.S. Our government, like others around the world, has the right to deny anyone entry into our country for any or no reason at all.

Except for Obama, every president has put the safety of the American people before “political correctness” or the sensitivities of foreigners. President Obama seems to be more concerned about hurting the feelings of Africans or hurting their economies more than protecting his own people.

If your neighbor’s kids have come down with a cold or the flu, you don’t allow your children to go next door to play with them until they have totally recovered from their illness. That is reasonable and normal thing to do for any responsible parent.

This whole Ebola crisis has less to do with science and more to do with the American people having absolutely no trust in Obama. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has been a total disaster.

So, this demand by the American people for a ban on travel from the three affected African countries is a result of people’s lack of confidence in Obama. Since we can’t believe anything this administration has to say, it seems only prudent to push for a moratorium on all travel from the countries impacted by Ebola.

People who share my views have been labeled as xenophobic, an abnormal hatred or fear of foreigners. So let me make sure I understand the logic here. The American people have been constantly lied to by this president on everything from Benghazi, the IRS, Fast and Furious, immigration, Syria, and now Ebola. But now we should still trust him and ignore the dangers of Ebola?

Americans are called xenophobic because we want to protect our country and its citizens. Well, you Africans should know and understand one thing. More “legal immigrants” are admitted into the U.S. annually than all the other countries of the world combined. How many people are clamoring to leave the U.S. for West Africa?

Some Africans who are now American citizens have been staging protests across the U.S. To my African friends on both sides of the Atlantic, if you don’t like the idea of protecting America and its citizens first, solve your own problems. Stop calling on America every time you get a cold or a headache. We have sent thousands of military personnel and hundreds of medical professionals to West Africa at no cost to these African countries. So, a little gratitude would be helpful and appreciated.

America has absolutely no obligation to help Africa during this crisis; but because we are America we feel we have extended a helping hand.

The president of Liberia, Ellen Sirleaf Johnson said, “the whole world has a stake in preventing an unfolding catastrophe in Liberia … It is the duty of all of us as global citizens to send a message that we will not leave millions of West Africans to fend for themselves.”

Many West African medical professionals refuse to go to their home countries because they have an obligation to protect their own families here in the U.S. The most notable example of this is President Johnson’s own son, Dr. James Sirleaf.

He is a graduate of Morehouse College and went on to earn his medical degree at Meharry Medical College in Nashville. He is married with four children. He now runs the emergency room at a hospital in Albany, Ga. After he and his mother came under heavy criticism for his refusal to go to Liberia and help with the epidemic, he responded by saying, “The symbolism of me going there [to Liberia] and potentially getting Ebola when I have a nine- and a seven-year-old at home isn’t worth it just to appease people. I’ve made a commitment not to live in Liberia for many reasons, and I think my contribution [contributions through his medical charity that he has since removed all personnel from Liberia] means more.”

Is Dr. Johnson also xenophobic? Or, is he simply using common sense?

In the immortal words of Colonel Nathan R. Jessep (played by Jack Nicholson) in the hit movie, “A Few Good Men,” I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man [or country] who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom that I provide, and then questions the manner in which I provide it. I would rather you just said thank you, and went on your way. Otherwise, I suggest you pick up a weapon and stand a post. Either way, I don’t give a damn what you think you are entitled to.”

Trick or Treat? Florida Medical and Law Enforcement Officials Highlight Dangers of Edible Marijuana Products

States where marijuana has been legalized grappling with danger of marijuana around children.

Florida children who go door to door for candy on Halloween may one day be at risk of receiving edible marijuana products if Amendment 2 comes to pass. This scary scenario isn’t the plot of an upcoming horror movie. According to medical and law enforcement officials, it’s a very real scenario playing out in states like California, Washington State and Colorado, where marijuana has been legalized.

“Allowing edible marijuana products to fall into the hands of kids is an unintended consequence of not only legalized marijuana use but also highly unregulated marijuana use,” said Dr. Alexander Garrard, Clinical Managing Director of the Washington Poison Control Center. “One of the major factors why we’ve had a spike in exposures is due to the lack of tight regulation in Washington State.”

VIDEO: Halloween Marijuana Edibles Warning

Florida’s proposed Amendment 2 could create the same dangers. It mandates that marijuana treatment centers be allowed to deal in food products containing marijuana, so lawmakers could not ban the sale of marijuana edibles that are attractive to children such as candies, cookies, and brownies. Any attempt by lawmakers to restrict marketing and sales of marijuana edibles is likely to be attacked and invalidated in court as unreasonable or not consistent with the right that Amendment 2 expressly creates.

“Edible marijuana products pose substantial challenges for law enforcement officers as we have seen in states where voters have legalized marijuana,” said Seminole County Sheriff Don Eslinger, a member of the Don’t Let Florida Go to Pot Coalition. “While parents should always be vigilant about the candy their children receive on Halloween, dealing with edible marijuana adds a new level of concern in states where it is legal. Florida parents do not need one more issue to cause concern.”

According to data presented by Dr. Garrard from the Washington Poison Center’s Toxic Trends Report, state officials have seen an increase in adult and pediatric marijuana exposures in 2014 that has surpassed all reported exposures in 2013 alone. Washington State legalized marijuana as “medicine” in 1998 and for so-called recreational purposes in 2012. Dr. Garrard has warned, “The increasing availability of marijuana edibles and lack of child-resistant packaging may ultimately contribute to a further increasing trend in pediatric exposures.”

Of the reported cases of pediatric marijuana exposures in Washington State, an alarming 27 percent were cases involving children from 1 to 3 years old. Fifty-three percent were teens aged 13 to 19 years old. The cases reported by the Washington Poison Center are only those reported voluntarily.

Like in Washington State, officials in Colorado are urging caution over the use of edible marijuana products. Recent published reports have detailed an explosion of marijuana edibles that look like harmless candy treats flooding markets and unfortunately kitchen pantries. A May report in USA Today detailed the account of one individual, who consumed a marijuana edible and became “intensely sick and lost control of his body. By 90 minutes, he was hyperventilating, freaking out and heading to the emergency room.” The report also notes that Colorado lawmakers have been rushing to tighten state regulations. In the absence of these regulations, there have been two deaths and reported instances of “bizarre behavior as consumers eat powerful pot-infused food.”

“Drug dependency and addiction can begin as individuals are exposed to substances early in life,” said Ben Cort, Director of Professional Relations at the University of Colorado Hospital Center for Dependency, Addiction, and Rehabilitation. “Allowing these drugs to end up within reach of children is simply a disaster waiting to happen.”

To prepare for the first Halloween since marijuana has been made widely available in Colorado, Denver police officials have issued a warning as parents are finding it increasingly difficult to differentiate between real candy and candy laced with pot. Edible marijuana products are known to use similar names as name brand products such as “Krondike Bars,” “Kif Kat bars,” “Jolly Jems,” and others.

“The challenges presented by legalizing marijuana have been widely noted across the country,” said drug policy expert and Drug Free America Foundation Executive Director Calvina Fay. “If you are a parent of a child, you should be aware that Amendment 2 will open the floodgates and expose our children to an enormous risk in the form of edible marijuana.”

dont let florida go to pot logoABOUT DON’T LET FLORIDA GO TO POT

The Don’t Let Florida Go to Pot coalition is a statewide public information campaign including elected officials such as former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam, House Speaker Will Weatherford and organizations such as the Florida Medical Association, Florida Sheriffs Association, Florida Chamber of Commerce, Associated Builders and Contractors of Florida, and the Florida Trucking Association. The coalition is a collective effort of local and state organizations working together to educate Floridians on the dangers of marijuana and efforts to allow marijuana for supposed medical uses in Florida. It is conducting an educational campaign on problems it sees with Amendment 2 which will be on the Florida ballot in November.

Ebola! Ebola! Yawn

AA - Ebola Nations

For a larger view click on the map.

How is Ebola spread? Two ways; one, by letting anyone exposed to it in West Africa into America when they fly here and, two, by assuming that medical professionals and others who have been exposed to it would quarantine themselves from contact with others once they are here.

The latest case is Dr. Craig Spencer, an American to whom the travel ban would not apply, identified as potentially having Ebola after treating victims in Africa and who totally ignored the potential of spreading it to others as he made his way around New York on subways, went bowling, and likely had dinner at a restaurant.

Earlier a NBC news crew that had been exposed to Ebola was issued a mandatory quarantine by the New Jersey Health Department, but its chief medical editor and correspondent, Dr. Nancy Snyderman, while symptom-free, decided to break the quarantine. One of the crew, Ashoko Mokpo, did fall ill and is being treated at the Nebraska Medical Center.

What does it tell you when two medical professional behave in this manner? It tells you that even those who know they can infect others were indifferent to the risk. It tells you that airport staff armed with thermometers are no defense against anyone coming in from the Ebola hot zone in Africa.

It tells you that the failure to impose a ban on all flights from West Africa should have been imposed weeks ago.

It tells you that sending three thousand active duty soldiers and another thousand reservists into the Ebola hot zone is a senseless act that exposes them to the disease and countless others on their return unless they are all held in quarantine until no signs of the disease are detected. The risk still remains even after the twenty-one days that the Center for Disease Control cites as the time in which victims would show signs of the disease.

The two Dallas nurses who acquired the disease have been treated and one has been released. As of October 23, there were eighteen cases of Ebola in Europe and the U.S. Unlike Africa, Western nations have responded quite well to the threat.

In New York, the Mayor, Bill de Blasio, was joined by the Governor Andrew Cuomo to hold a

press conference that seemed to this observer intended to exonerate them of any charge they were not taking Dr. Spencer’s foolishness lightly and to avoid public panic among a public that is clearly not panicking.

Given the continued news coverage of Ebola, it is amazing that Americans have absorbed the fundamental message that the disease has not affected those outside the healthcare community with the exception of the NBC crew and that steps have been put in place to identify and isolate those who had it. Moreover, while a deadly virus in Africa, it has been treated and cured here in America.

So far, so good.

The real challenge will be the flu season when lots of people will show up at hospitals with flu symptoms that resemble Ebola symptoms. If you haven’t been vaccinated, get one! How hospitals deal with this is going to be a real test of their judgment and skills.

I am hopeful we may be spared more press conferences that don’t tell us anything more than what we already know. I surely don’t want to hear President Obama tell me that everything is fine and there is nothing to worry about.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

CDC Agrees to Florida Ebola Preparedness Requests — To little to late? Déjà vu Pandemic?

The first line of defense against the spread of infectious diseases like Ebola is sealing the U.S. borders. The second line of defense, once the border is breached by omission or commission, is Florida’s hospitals. We can learn important lessons from another recent and ongoing pandemic – HIV/AIDS. HIV/AIDS and Ebola are pandemics. Both are transmitted by physical contact. Both kill horribly. Both could have been stopped from reaching our shores. Neither was.

Are we making the same mistakes twice? Is this a case of “Déjà vu Pandemic?”

A new study of the spread of the HIV/AIDS virus shows that the disease’s origin was in the small town of Kinshasa, Congo.  National Geographic’s Brandon Keim reports, “As the Ebola epidemic spreads, new information has emerged on the origins of a far more deadly killer. A new family history of the HIV virus that causes AIDS, reported Thursday [October 2, 2014], is troubling but instructive: Modernization in mid-20th-century Africa, especially in the city Kinshasa, played a profound role in shaping that global epidemic.”

How did the HIV/AIDS virus initially spread in Africa? Via their rail system, eventually reaching the shores of the U.S by boat and by plane.

While public support for a travel ban on countries with the Ebola virus grows, President Obama refuses to implement any such travel ban. On October 16, 2014 The Daily Signal’s Rob Bluey reported that U.S. Embassies in Ebola-stricken countries are still processing visas for non-U.S. citizens.

Accuracy in Media’s Cliff Kincaid in his column “Seeing Ebola Through Obama’s Eyes” writes:

The nephew of the black African who brought Ebola to the United States doesn’t blame his uncle. He blames us. He writes in The Dallas Morning News that his uncle did everything right in Liberia, but still got Ebola, and wasn’t treated correctly in the U.S. The claim is that he had a right to be on U.S. soil and that it’s our fault he’s dead.

I suspect this is how President Barack Obama views Ebola. How else do you explain his opposition to a common-sense ban on travel to the U.S. by people from Ebola-infected countries?

Tragically, Obama’s alternative is for the U.S. to become infected. Then, he must figure, there will be more pressure to find a “cure,” or at least a vaccine. But who knows how many will die in the process? It could be hundreds, or thousands, or more.

Florida Governor Scott announced that the CDC has agreed to two of the state’s requests for enhancing Florida’s Ebola preparedness efforts, including holding a conference call with healthcare workers on best practices and federal approval of the state’s repurpose of more than $7 million in federal grant funding. The CDC, has still not provided the additional 27 testing kits, or contacted the passengers that flew on the Frontier flight from Dallas to Ft. Lauderdale.

Governor Scott said:

“We want to thank the CDC for agreeing to hold a conference call with Florida hospitals on Monday, October 20th at 3:30 p.m. Our healthcare workers need to hear directly from the CDC on what happened in Dallas that allowed Ebola to be transmitted to two nurses, and what can be done to protect our healthcare professionals in Florida who are on the front lines. Florida hospitals also have questions of their own and the CDC must provide guidance.

“We appreciate the CDC’s preliminary approval to move forward with redirecting more than $7 million in federal grant funds to purchase the necessary equipment and supplies to protect healthcare workers who may come into contact with Ebola. The CDC indicated that we will receive formal approval next week, but based on this preliminary approval, we have already begun using these funds to enhance our Ebola preparedness efforts.

“While this is great progress, we’re waiting on the CDC to provide additional testing kits. With a population of more than 19 million people, tens of millions of tourists, and numerous ports and international airports, we must ensure Florida can rapidly test any future patients who have the potential for Ebola.

“The CDC still needs to identify, notify, and monitor all of the passengers that flew from Dallas to Ft. Lauderdale after nurse Amber Joy Vinson flew on the same plane. We know she had a low grade-fever when she traveled to Dallas, and the plane then came to Florida. While this risk is low, there have been reports she was potentially symptomatic, and the CDC should take any potential threat seriously – no matter how small. We’re continuing to hope for the best, while preparing for the worst and we expect the CDC to do everything possible to ensure our communities are kept safe.”

The CDC has agreed to hold a conference call with Florida hospitals on Monday, October 20th at 3:30 p.m. This call will cover critical areas of preparedness and training for our Florida hospitals. Officials with the CDC’s state and local readiness section will be hosting the call with Florida’s hospital executives. The call will provide guidance for proper use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), safe handling of medical waste and effective clinical strategies within the hospital setting.