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John Kasich's bad idea
by Cal Thomas
Nov 29, 2015 | 46 views | 0 0 comments | 0 0 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Conservatives are supposed to be against big government and opposed to the left's belief that problems can and should be solved by Washington. Which is why Ohio governor and Republican presidential candidate John Kasich's proposal to create a new government agency to promote "Judeo-Christian values" is a really bad idea. Put aside for a moment that the federal government does few things well, or within budget, and consider also how preposterous and unworkable such an idea would be. In a speech at the National Press Club in Washington last week, Kasich, who grew up Catholic and remains a man of Christian faith, said he thinks the U.S. needs such an agency to help the country be "more forceful in the battle of ideas." He added, "U.S. public diplomacy and international broadcasting have lost their focus on the case for Western values and ideals and effectively countering your opponents' propaganda and disinformation." Here is a short list of the many problems with such a proposal. Problem No. 1: Who would represent the "Judeos" and the "Christians"? Would it be an Orthodox or reformed Jew? Would a Jewish mystic from the Kabbalah sect be included? There are numerous Christian denominations and sects, so how would Kasich select one as representative of Christianity? Would those left out protest? Would there be lawsuits, not only from excluded religious groups, but from the ACLU? Church-state separation, you know. Problem No. 2: What "values" would be promoted? Certainly not, one would hope, cultural values, as displayed in many Hollywood films and on television. Are the "traditional values" Kasich supports even practiced by a majority of Americans in an age when we seem to tolerate everything (except traditional values) and when the Kardashians take up far too much brain space? Who would be the ultimate decider on which "values" to promote? And what about people who seek to promote values different from Kasich's? Problem No. 3: Do we really want to turn over what ought to be the responsibility and privilege of individual religious believers to the federal government, which can't even save dollars taken from taxpayers, much less the souls of individual citizens? Too many churches, especially, have retreated from their responsibility to apply their faith to those who are hungry, homeless and imprisoned. Tax-exempt ministries now do the work individuals have been commanded to do. Problem No. 4: How do you promote American "values" to secular and Islamic societies, which mostly do not share them? Who has the credibility to speak for and represent such values, even if they could be agreed upon? A president can promote values by talking about them and endorsing individuals and programs that practice them. The Voice of America and Radio Liberty used to broadcast American values to the world during the Cold War, but in the Internet age, broadcasting, which can be easily jammed, is probably not as effective as the web. In order for a country to promote something, it must first practice it. A better idea would be to allow school choice so that poor children especially can be liberated from failing public schools and given a chance for a better life. A good education is a value that can be enhanced by the federal government getting out of the way and busting the last major monopoly in the country: public education. Kasich rightly laments the loss of some core values most Americans once embraced. It wasn't the federal government that got rid of most of them – though the Supreme Court played a role. Rather, it is we the people who have chosen to live by different values to our detriment and shame. If they are to return, it will take the work of those "Judeo-Christians" and not the dysfunctional federal government. (Readers may email Cal Thomas at tcaeditors@tribpub.com.)
Will Europe man up?
by Pat Buchanan
Nov 29, 2015 | 0 views | 0 0 comments | 0 0 recommendations | email to a friend | print
If the purpose of terrorism is to terrify, the Islamic State had an extraordinary week. Brussels, capital of the EU and command post of mighty NATO, is still in panic and lockdown. "In Brussels, fear of attack lingers" was Monday's headline over The Washington Post's top story, which read: "Not since Boston came to a near-standstill after the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013 has the life of a major Western city been brought to a halt this way by the fear of terrorism." Below that is this headline: "After Paris, a campaign changed by fear." That story is about what's happened in our presidential race: "Across the country ... have come pronouncements of anger and fear not seen after the terrorist attacks in London and Madrid – or even in some ways after Sept. 11 2001." Voters speak of "feeling more afraid of the Islamic State, more horrified by the imagery of the beheadings and other atrocities." The New York Times' Roger Cohen describes the Paris he loves. "[T]hey are shaken. There is a void in the streets too empty, a new suspicion in appraising glances, a wary numbness. Paris is afflicted with absences – the dead, of course; visitors frightened away; minds frozen by fear; and tranquility lost. The city feels vulnerable." "I think France is attacked above all for what it is," writes Cohen, "That in turn is terrifying. ... I don't think Paris has ever felt so precious or precarious to me as it did over the past week." Terrible as the massacres were, some perspective is in order. What happened on Friday the 13th is that nine fanatics of the Islamic State, using suicide vests and AK-47s, slaughtered people at restaurants, a soccer stadium and in a concert hall. The death toll of 130 is being called the "worst attack on French soil since World War II." Yet, from August 1914 to November of 1918, World War I, 850 French died every day for 51 months, a total of 1.3 million in four years in a country not nearly so populous as France is today. On Aug. 22, 1914, some 27,000 French soldiers died resisting the German invasion. Yet France survived to dictate terms to Berlin. But that France was another country than today's. In our own Civil War, in a country one-tenth as populous as today, 400 Americans, North and South, died every day for four years. The point of this recital is not to minimize the horror in Paris. But it is to suggest that when Jeb Bush calls the attack on Paris "an organized effort to destroy western civilization," he is ascribing to our enemies in ISIS powers they do not remotely possess. Indeed, the terror, fear, panic and paralysis exhibited today is in ways more alarming than the massacre itself. Russia lost twice as many people on that airliner blown up over Sinai as died in France. But Russia and Vladimir Putin do not appear to be terrorized. Every week in Iraq, terrorists claim as many lives as were lost in France. In Syria's civil war, 250,000 have died. This translates into more dead every day for four years than died in Paris on Nov. 13. What has happened to a West that once ruled the world? By any measure – military, economic, scientific – the Islamic State, compared to the West, is a joke. What the Islamists do have, however, is this: If they can reach the West and are willing to give up their lives, and can learn how to fire an AK-47 or construct a suicide vest, they can terrify the peoples of the West by slaughtering dozens or scores of them. For 10 days, ISIS killers have dominated world news, television, print and social media. So doing, they have engendered a real fear in the heart of Western man. The strength of ISIS, of the Islamist militants, of those willing to die driving the "Crusaders" out of their lands, beheading infidels, imposing sharia, attacking the West, lies in an emptiness in the soul of Western Man. Many Europeans are the "hollow men" of T. S. Eliot's depiction. They have repudiated their cradle faith Christianity, apologized for the sins of their fathers and sought to make reparations, embraced La Dolce Vita, materialism and hedonism, freeloaded off U.S. defense for 70 years, ceased to have children, thrown open their borders to former colonial peoples to come and repopulate the continent, and turned their back on patriotism to celebrate diversity and globalism. They invited the world in. And the world is coming to enjoy the lavish fruits of their welfare states and, one day, will be using the West's concept of one-man, one-vote to rule the countries that ruled their ancestors. The colonized are slowly becoming the conquerors. The challenge of ISIS is not entirely unhealthy. It will tell us whether Europe has the will to survive. As for Paris, time to move on. For, given the triumph this has been for ISIS, more such massacres are inevitable. (Daily Corinthian columnist Pat Buchanan is an American conservative political commentator, author, syndicated columnist, politician and broadcaster.)
The disappearing governors
by Thomas Sowell
Nov 29, 2015 | 0 views | 0 0 comments | 0 0 recommendations | email to a friend | print
There is a painful irony in a recent decision of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, on the side of Governor Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, whom the U.S. Department of Justice tried to stop from making charter schools widely available to minority youngsters in his state. The Circuit Court's decision over-ruled a lower court decision on the side of the Justice Department, which was opposing the large-scale creation of charter schools in Louisiana, on grounds that this would interfere with long-standing federal government efforts to racially integrate public schools. In short, Governor Jindal's attempt to give minority children a chance for a better education prevailed against the attempts of the political left to use these children as guinea pigs for their theories about mixing and matching students by race. What made the Circuit Court decision ironic and painful was that this decision came right after Bobby Jindal had withdrawn his candidacy for the Republican nomination for president in 2016. Nor was he the first governor to withdraw from the campaign for a presidential nomination. Nor is he likely to be the last. Some of us think someone who is going to govern from the White House ought to have had some experience governing somewhere else before, if only so that we can get some idea of how good – or how bad – he is at governing. How good someone may have been in business, or in a profession, or as a member of Congress, is no real clue to what that individual will be like when it comes to governing the country. Certainly choosing a first-term Senator on the basis of his political rhetoric is something that has not turned out well in the case of Barack Obama, and may turn out to be truly catastrophic, as international terrorism spreads. The withdrawal of Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin, and then of Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, are major losses – not because we know that either of them would make a great president, but precisely because we have no idea whether either of them would have been great or awful. The primary campaign is supposed to help us find out such things. Instead, the media have turned this into a side show about Donald Trump. Nor was this all media political bias. The Fox News Channel, which broadcast the first "debates," opened up the second-tier candidates' session with a question about Donald Trump, who was not even present, rather than about the nation's problems, which have been all too present. The media instinct for the flashy and clever irrelevancy seems to be non-partisan. The fact that we may be at a crossroads in world history does not seem to spoil their sense of fun and games. Much of the time that could have been spent bringing out what candidates with governing experience have to offer was spent instead interviewing not only Trump himself but even members of his family. This year the Republicans have had a much better qualified set of nominees to choose from than in previous election years. But most of them may be gone before we have learned enough about them to know whether we would have been for them or against them. We may already know as much as we are likely to know about the three first-term Senators – Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and Rand Paul – since they have no governing records to be examined. We may also know as much about the candidates from outside politics – Donald Trump, Ben Carson and Carly Fiorina – as we are likely to know. It is the governors who have a record that goes beyond their rhetorical skills. And it is those records that need to be examined. A complicating factor in this and some previous Republican primary campaigns is that there are so many conservatives splitting the conservative vote that it may guarantee that some mushy moderate gets the nomination, but cannot get enough Republican voters to turn out on election day. At this point, Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey seems to be the kind of articulate conservative candidate who can galvanize Republican voters to turn out on election day to vote, and perhaps even attract some Democrats with that political rarity, straight talk. (Daily Corinthian columnist Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305. His website is www.tsowell.com.)
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Sunrise Christian wins Challenge, local teams pick up first victories
by H. Lee Smith II
Nov 28, 2015 | 1 views | 0 0 comments | 0 0 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The sun didn’t set on Sunrise Christian Academy. The Kansas club won the initial Lighthouse Challenge Championship with a pair of wins Thanksgiving weekend at Corinth High School Academic and Performing Arts Center. The Buffaloes turned in another defensive performance on Saturday, beating Hamilton Heights (Tenn.) 45-34 in the championship contest. Friday, Sunrise also allowed just 34 points, in a 54-34 win over Wesley Christian in the second semifinal contest. • Saturday also saw the single-game scoring record fall twice. Madison Academy’s Josh Langford displaced Callaway’s Malik Newman and Marshall Academy’s Dakota Dailey -- who each had 32 in last year’s gathering -- with a 34-point showing in a 65-48 win over Bolton, Tennessee. Four games later and in the 16th game of the weekend, J.O. Johnson’s John Petty hung 40 on Callaway in the Alabama team’s 98-51 win. • After going 0-2 in Friday’s action of the 3rd Annual Lighthouse Thanksgiving Classic, Alcorn County rebounded with a pair of wins. Alcorn Central opened the nine-game late with a 67-41 win over Jumpertown in its lone tourney contest. Corinth rebounded from Friday’s low-scoring loss with Bolton to dispatch of Christ Presbyterian Academy (Tenn.) 47-41. The Warriors (2-1) continued their trend of splitting their two-game sets in the LHC. Game Two of the day saw Kossuth drop its second straight game of the week. After falling to Ripley in Kossuth Turkey Tournament action on Tuesday, the Aggies came up on the short end of a 56-53 contest with Hickory Flat. Corinth 47, Christ Presbyterian 41 The Warriors overcame a 1-for-12 showing in the first quarter by outscoring the visitors 18-3 in the third quarter. Corinth trailed 10-4 after one and 20-13 at the break before doubling its output with 18 third-quarter points. Game MVP Antares Gwyn scored six and assisted on a deuce in a 12-3 run that gave Corinth its first lead. Tameric Perry’s bucket off a Gwyn dish put Corinth up 25-23 with 2:47 left in the third. Gwyn, who scored nine of his game-high 20 in the third, took one of his 14 rebounds coast-to-coast for a five-point lead. Tada Stricklen, who added 11, drained a 3-pointer ahead of the horn to give Corinth a 31-23 lead heading into the fourth. Jon D. Warren gave Corinth its biggest lead at 33-23 early in the fourth. Christ Presbyterian pulled back to within three with 3:02 remaining, before Stricklen and Javen Morrison went on an 8-3 run to give the Warriors an eight-point lead with 32 seconds left. Alcorn Central 67, Jumpertown 41 The Golden Bears provided the county’s first 2015 LHC win with a 67-41 decision over Jumpertown. Up 17-11 after one, the Bears used a 42-21 advantage in the middle quarters to bump the lead to 59-32 heading to last call. Game MVP Blake McIntyre and Trevor Godwin came up big in the middle frames. McIntyre, who tallied a game-high 23, had 16 over the second and third, while Godwin scored 12 of his 20 in the same span. Central (3-4) had seven 3-point buckets, all courtesy Godwin and McIntyre. Dalton Hanna paced Jumpertown (2-5) with 14 points. Hickory Flat 56, Kossuth 53 The Aggies’ rally from a 47-39 deficit to begin the fourth fell three points shy. The Rebels (4-2) made 7-of-12 from the free-throw line in the fourth, to help offset the Kossuth comeback. Nine three-pointers over the first three periods helped Hickory Flat take leads of three, eight and eight at the regular stoppages of play. Randtail Isom led the Rebels with 18 points and was one of three Hickory Flat players to record multiple 3-pointers. His efforts earned him game MVP honors. Rick Hodum led Kossuth (5-3) with a game-high 19 digits. Kennedy Dye followed with 14 and Nik Wilcher added 12. Dye had half of Kossuth’s four extra-point buckets.
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