Recently I attended a conference on energy for state legislators . I learned much about the sources, production, transport and worldwide demand of energy, including renewables. I also studied the regulatory and tax structure of the American energy industry.
While the majority of the issues dealing with energy are federal - which means I don’t get to vote on the question of whether to allow increased drilling in the United States in places like ANWAR -it is paramount to me that state policy does not increase the cost of energy nor further limit access to energy resources.
Tennessee produces 60% of its electric power from coal, 0% from natural gas, 29% from nuclear and 11% from hydro electric. This combination gives Tennessee the 7th lowest electric rates in the nation.
Little known is that 35% of the petroleum consumed in the US comes from our own nation. Canada is our largest foreign oil supplier and Mexico is second. In fact, 66.7% of the oil Americans consume comes from the Western Hemisphere.
The oil embargo of the 1970's caused many countries in the world to move away from OPEC and develop their own oil resources. The US has become a consumer of oil from many of these nations. Today, the US imports 26.9% of our oil from OPEC nations, down from 50% in the 1970's. Unfortunately, over the same period, federal policy has made our own energy reserves increasingly more difficult to access.
Worldwide demand for energy is increasing due to the rising standards of living in underdeveloped nations. While it is good that billions of people are moving out of poverty and into healthier and more productive lives, the supply of energy has not kept pace with the demand. Creating incentives for the use of food to make energy has caused major problems for the US consumer as well as for impoverished nations.
It is clear that the US needs to develop and utilize our own energy reserves, create bio-fuels from non-consumables, and utilize alternatives where they make sense geographically; for instance,utilize wind where it blows reliably enough to be producitve; increase the use of solar energy where the sun is a consistent source. Nuclear energy advances have been made around the world and should be employed in this country. Yet, the US hasn't had a new plant built since the 1970's.
Thirty years of poor federal policy has brought us to where we are today. As a state legislator, I understand that the quality of life of my constituents depends largely on affordable energy sources. Ensuring that state policies don’t inhibit access to our resources is very important. In addition, there are a number of things we can do on the state level to help with energy policy and all of them encourage the free market, help consumers, and would ensure a bright future for Tennessee.
State Representative Susan Lynn is a member of the Tennessee General Assembly serving on the House Commerce Committee and Government Operations Committees. She is national chairman of the Commerce, Insurance and Economic Development Task Force for the American Legislative Exchange Council. She can be reached at www.repsusanlynn.com.
215 War Memorial Building
Nashville, Tennessee 37243
Britain's Daily Mail, Jan. 29, 2007, reported in the article "Multiculturalism drives young Muslims to shun British values":
Multiculturalism has alienated an entire generation of young Muslims and made them increasingly radical, a report has found. In stark contrast with their parents, growing numbers sympathize with extreme teachings of Islam, with almost four in 10 wanting to live under Sharia law in Britain. The study identifies significant support for wearing the veil in public … and even punishment by death for Muslims who convert to another religion. Most alarmingly, 13 percent of young Muslims said they "admired" organizations such as al-Qaida which are prepared to "fight the West."
Germany's Spiegel, Dec. 20, 2007, reported in the article "Interior Ministry warns of radicalization of Muslims":
A new study released by Germany's Interior Ministry has added new fuel to the debate about integration of Muslims in Germany, with the report warning about the danger of radicalization of Muslims. According to the study ... 40 percent of Muslims surveyed had a "fundamentalist orientation" ... 6 percent of those surveyed were classified as having "violent tendencies," while 14 percent of respondents had "anti-democratic" tendencies. ... The report also concluded that religious beliefs are becoming increasingly important for young people.
Europe is wondering why fundamental Islam is not assimilating; history may reveal the reason.
The word "Islam" means submission to the will of Allah, and a "Muslim" is someone who has submitted. A "dhimmi" is an inferior non-Muslim coerced to submit.
Muhammad divided the world into two parts: those who have submitted and those yet to submit. He called these two parts the House of Islam and the House of War, pronounced in Arabic "dar al-Islam" and "dar al-harb."
Within 100 years of Muhammad's death in A.D. 632, fundamental Islamic caliphs, with cavalry armed with scimitar swords, subjugated vast areas of the world: Arabia, Persia, the Holy Land, North Africa, Spain, Southern France, Sicily, Central Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia.
Egypt was conquered by Muslim Gen. Amr ibn al-As. Gen. Khalid ibn al-Walid was called the "Drawn Sword of Allah" for being undefeated in nearly 100 battles.
In the next 1,000 years, Sultans subdued Indonesia, Java, Borneo, Sumatra, the Byzantine Empire, the Balkans, Armenia, Greece, Romania, Bulgaria, Albania, Wallachia, Moldova, Serbia and regions of China, Tibet, Bengal, Mongolia, India, Russia, Hungary and Poland.
In 1529 and 1683, over 100,000 Turkish Muslims attack Vienna, Austria.
Whereas "world peace" in the West means peaceful coexistence, "world peace" in Islam means the world submitting to the will of Allah.
Since there is no one theological body governing all of Islam, faithful Muslims have developed differing views.
Moderate Muslims think the remaining area of the world will submit to Allah in the distant future, maybe at the Hour of Judgment. Therefore, since it is so far off, it is acceptable to get along with non-Muslims in the present.
Fundamental violent Muslims think the rest of the world is submitting to Allah now and feel it is Islam's "manifest destiny" to make it happen. They would just as soon fight moderate Muslims, considering them backslidden from following the example of Muhammad and the caliphs.
Moderate Muslims are hesitant to speak out against fundamental violent Muslims, as occasionally one does and they are threatened, intimidated, forced to change their names for protection, have fatwas put on them and even killed.
So there could, in a sense, be three groups of Muslims: a minority of fundamental violent ones; a majority of moderate ones who are afraid of the fundamental violent ones; and the courageous dead ones who were not afraid of the fundamental violent ones.
The West may be inadvertently fueling the problem by not understanding that fundamental Muslims interpret their "politeness" as weakness or submission.
Saudi Arabia was pressured to revise its fundamental textbooks supplied to Muslim schools around the world, including the U.S., because they contained intolerance.
The Washington Post, May 21, 2006, published excerpts of these textbooks in an article "This is a Saudi textbook (after the intolerance was removed)":
4TH GRADE: "True belief means ... that you hate the polytheists and infidels."
5TH GRADE: "It is forbidden for a Muslim to be a loyal friend to someone who does not believe in Allah and His Prophet."
8TH GRADE: "The apes are Jews, the people of the Sabbath; while the swine are the Christians, the infidels of the communion of Jesus."
9TH GRADE: "It is part of Allah's wisdom that the struggle between the Muslim and the Jews should continue until the Hour [of Judgment]."
11TH GRADE: "Do not yield to Christians and Jews on a narrow road out of honor and respect."
One may have to read that last line again:
"DO NOT YIELD to Christians and Jews on a narrow road out of honor and respect."
In other words, when a Christian or Jew thinks they are being polite by letting a Muslim go first, the fundamental student is taught that they are simply acknowledging Islam's superiority.
Thus the dilemma:
If the West naively promotes tolerance of a belief system that does not promote tolerance, it is effectively promoting intolerance.
If the West refuses to promote an intolerant belief system, it is accused of being intolerant.
Muslims still sees the West, and particularly America, as a predominately Judeo-Christian.
Newsweek Magazine (September 2005) reported America as 85 percent Christian (58 percent Protestant, 22 percent Catholic, 5 percent other Christian); 2 percent Jewish; 1 percent atheist; 0.5 percent Buddhist; 0.5 percent Hindu; 10 percent other/non-reporting; and 1 percent Muslim.
So the question is: What goes through the mind of a moderate Muslim, who thinks the world will submit to Allah in the distant future, when he sees this predominately Judeo-Christian nation going to great lengths to tolerate Islam now?
Let's look at the history of Islam's influence in the United States:
1991 – Imam Siraj Wahhaj was the first Muslim to offer prayer in the U.S. House of Representatives.
1992 – Imam Warith Deen Muhammad was the first Muslim to offer prayer in the U.S. Senate.
1993 – Abdul Rasheed Muhammad became the first Muslim U.S. Army chaplin (imam), spiritually instructing about 5,000 Muslim soldiers.
1996 – Monje Malak Abd Al-Muta"Ali ibn Noel Jr. became the First Muslim U.S. Naval chaplain (imam).
1996 – First lady Hillary Clinton hosted a White House reception for Muslims on Id al-Fitr, the end of Ramadan.
1999 – New York City Police Department appointed its first Muslim chaplain, Imam Izak-El M. Pasha.
1999 – U.S. Postal Service published its first stamp honoring a Muslim leader, Malcolm X.
2001, Aug. 1 – U.S. Postal Service issued the Islamic postage stamp, "Eid Mubarak."
2001, Sept. 11 – Fundamental Muslim terrorist attacks.
2001, Nov. 16 – Muslim chaplain of Georgetown University prayed in the U.S. House of Representatives, followed by a dinner hosted by President Bush to honor the occasion.
2001, Nov. 19 – President Bush was the first president to invite 50 ambassadors from Islamic countries to celebrate Ramadan, where, for the first time in the White House, Muslims knelt and touched the floor with their foreheads in a formal ceremony.
2002, Dec. 5 – President Bush was the first president to take off his shoes to visit an Islamic Center.
2005, Jan. 20 – President Bush was the first president to mention the Quran in an Inaugural Address.
2007, Jan. 4 – Nancy Pelosi stood next to Keith Ellison as he swore upon a Quran to become the first Muslim U.S. congressman.
2007, April 5 – Highest member of the U.S. Congress, speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, went to Syria and submitted to Islamic law by covering her head with a Muslim Hijab (veil).
2007, April 17 – President Bush was the first president to appoint a Muslim U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Zalmay Khalilzad.
2007, June – First Muslim prayer meeting began in the U.S. Capitol building, bowing toward Mecca.
2008, Jan. 9 – President Bush was the first president to call for fulfilling the Muslim dream of pressuring Israel to give up sole sovereignty of Jerusalem.
2008 – Barak Hussein Obama, the first presidential candidate whose middle name is that of Muhammad's grandson, told the French magazine Paris Match, Jan. 31, 2008: "Once I'm elected, I want to organize a summit in the Muslim world."
So the question again is: What goes through the mind of a moderate Muslim, who thinks the world will submit to Allah in the distant future, when they see this predominately Judeo-Christian nation going to great lengths to tolerate Islam now?
Research by social scientists, although not definitive, suggests that children reared by openly homosexual parents are far more likely to engage in homosexual behavior than children raised by others. Studies thus far find between 8% and 21% of homosexually parented children ultimately identify as non-heterosexual. For comparison purposes, approximately 2% of the general population are non-heterosexual. Therefore, if these percentages continue to hold true, children of homosexuals have a 4 to 10 times greater likelihood of developing a non-heterosexual preference than other children. A Review and Analysis of Research Studies
COMMENT: The article below is a VERY IMPORTANT article and I urge you to read every word.
Redefinition Revolution Gay marriage is about more than Adam and Steve.
By Maggie Gallagher
Today, California same-sex couples are rushing to the altar. But this November, California voters will have their chance to say “I do” or “I do not” to gay marriage.
In the meantime, what have we learned about what gay marriage will mean for gays, for marriage, and for the wider society? In just the last few months, a newly confident same-sex-marriage movement is becoming more open and revealing about the answers.
The New York Times, of all places, gave us a glimpse in its front-page story this past Sunday, “Gay Couples Find Marriage Is a Mixed Bag.” What can we tentatively conclude? First, the conservative case for same-sex marriage is looking pretty tattered.
Same-sex marriages are tailing off rapidly, after what the New York Times describes as “an initial euphoric rush to the altar.” In Massachusetts, that rush included residents of other states — as indicated by the New York Times headline of May 18, 2004: “Despite Uncertainties, Out-of-Staters Line Up to Marry.” The latest data indicate that 867 gay weddings took place in Massachusetts in the first eight months of 2007, down from 6,121 gay weddings in the first six months of 2004.
This is the same pattern seen in other jurisdictions where same-sex marriage has been allowed. A 2006 report The Demand for Same-Sex Marriage, released by the Institute for Marriage and Public Policy (where I am president), looked at every nation and Canadian province that had same-sex marriage and concluded: “Trend data is extremely limited, but the available data suggest that the number of gay marriages tends to decrease after an initial burst (reflecting pent up demand).”
Second, many gay married couples reject “heteronormative” assumptions about marriage, and they (as well as the New York Times) are becoming remarkably more open about this.
When Andrew Sullivan tentatively suggested in the early Nineties that gay couples have a thing or two to teach heterosexuals about the rigid presumption of sexual fidelity, the public outcry lead him to recant (and today, he gets mad at you if you point out that he actually did say it).
Less than a decade later, Eric Erbelding from the perch of his legally recognized Massachusetts gay marriage, is quite comfortable explaining to the New York Times that “Our rule is you can play around because, you know, you have to be practical.”
Eric elaborates why he think it works for gay men: “I think men view sex very differently than women. Men are pigs, they know that each other are pigs, so they can operate accordingly. It doesn’t mean anything.”
Still, Mr. Erbelding said, in what to the old-fashioned ear is the most astonishing single sentence in the whole piece: most married gay couples he knows are “for the most part monogamous, but for maybe a casual three-way.”
For the most part . . . except for the casual three-way?
But hey, if the word “marriage” can be redefined as a civil-rights imperative, why balk at lesser ideas like “monogamy” or “fidelity”?
I am in no position to confirm or deny Mr. Erbelding’s judgment about what the men he knows in gay marriages do. But David Benkof, a gay columnist who gave up sex with men when he adopted a Torah-observant lifestyle, recently made the same point in his intellectually fecund new website Gays Defend Marriage.
Problematic kinds of relationships that are “commonly found in the LGBT community but virtually unheard of among opposite-sex couples” Benkof warns, “will have every right to use the word marriage.”
He goes on to point out these differences: “I have never been at a soiree with multiple straight “committed” couples in which someone suggests we take off our clothes and see what happens, but I’m sad to say it’s happened with gay friends in long-term relationships. Of course, I know, many men cheat on their wives. But they almost never define their marriage as something that accommodates adultery.”
What about polygamy? Is that the natural next step? When people ask me this, my stock answer has become, “I don’t know, go ask the guys in the Harvard Law School faculty lounge.” Because if the California decision stands, there simply is no longer any case to be made we have begun to win the war for judicial restraint. If a court can rule that same-sex marriage is a fundamental right (i.e., one deeply rooted in our nation’s traditions) then it can make up anything. Elite legal minds get to figure out what they think and break it to the rest of us once they’ve decided.
The Washington Blade, one of the nation’s leading gay newspapers, took up this question more thoughtfully than I do in its June 6 issue. The experts they consulted are somewhat divided on the question. But Prof. Jonathan Turley, for one,calls ongay-marriage advocates to make a clean breast of what the new “right-to-marry” principle means: Adult polygamists who “do not believe in child brides,” he told the paper, should be allowed to formalize their relationships.
“I don’t like polygamy but that’s not what’s important here,” Prof. Turley said. “[T]here will have to be a new definition of marriage because it’s disingenuous to say that gays and lesbians should be included in marriage but then for them to exclude others.”
I don’t know how the polygamy debate will end up. But if fidelity in marriage is culturally optional, and we’ve now got a fundamental human right to have the government confer dignity on all our family choices (which is what California supreme court ruled), the case for monogamy will surely be weakened as well.
But don’t worry: By the time it happens, culture will have shifted far enough that you won’t care anymore. That’s the progressives’ promise.
And the newly resurgent cultural liberalism we face has no compunctions about using the law to impose its morality on the rest of us.
For no dogma has been more thoroughly promoted by same-sex marriage advocates than the idea that gay marriage is harmless; there’s no real reason to oppose it, even if you don’t exactly agree, because it will only affect Adam and Steve — so why should you care?
That was a good line for a few years, but with the California court victory, it is being replaced in gay newspapers with more open acknowledgements of what Adam and Steve’s right to gay marriage will really mean for the rest of us.
For example, a May 30 Washington Blade story asked, “what about religious adoption agencies or daycare centers? Will they be forced to accommodate gays?”
“Experts say organizations that receive state and federal funding will not be allowed to oppose working with gays for religious reasons,” the Blade forthrightly reports, “Some, most notably Catholic Charities of Boston (gay marriage is legal in Massachusetts), have opted to get out of the adoption business rather than be forced to allow gays to adopt.”
What about the next step: “Could churches in time risk their tax-exempt status by refusing to marry gays?”
Here’s the official answer from a leading gay paper, “That remains to be seen and will likely result in a steady stream of court battles.” Are those the same courts that decided same-sex marriage is a constitutional right?
This week National Public Radio similarly highlighted the coming religious-liberty conflicts, opening with a remarkably frank and open admission of how serious the implications are: “As gay couples in California head to the courthouse starting Monday to get legally married, there are signs of a coming storm” — as NPR put it in their written version — “Two titanic legal principles are crashing on the steps of the church, synagogue and mosque: equal treatment for same-sex couples on the one hand, and the freedom to exercise religious beliefs on the other.”
“The collision that will play out over the next few years will be filled with pathos on both sides,” NPR says. But the story also acknowledges: “So far, the religious groups are losing.”
Here’s the conclusion I’ve come to after four-plus years of active participation in the same-sex-marriage debate: Gay marriage is not primarily about marriage. It’s also not about Adam and Steve and their personal practical legal needs. It is about inserting into the law the principle that “gay is the new black” — that sexual orientation should be treated exactly the same way we treat race in law and culture.
Gay-marriage advocates say it all the time: People who think marriage is the union of husband and wife are like bigots who opposed interracial marriage. Believe them. They say it because they mean it.
The architects of this strategy have targeted marriage because it stands in the way of the America they want to create: They hope to use the law to reshape the culture in exactly the same way that the law was used to reshape the culture of the old racist south.
By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Monday, July 07, 2008 4:20 PM PT
Iraq: What would happen if the U.S. won a war but the media didn't tell the American public? Apparently, we have to rely on a British newspaper for the news that we've defeated the last remnants of al-Qaida in Iraq.
London's Sunday Times called it "the culmination of one of the most spectacular victories of the war on terror." A terrorist force that once numbered more than 12,000, with strongholds in the west and central regions of Iraq, has over two years been reduced to a mere 1,200 fighters, backed against the wall in the northern city of Mosul.
The destruction of al-Qaida in Iraq (AQI) is one of the most unlikely and unforeseen events in the long history of American warfare. We can thank President Bush's surge strategy, in which he bucked both Republican and Democratic leaders in Washington by increasing our forces there instead of surrendering.
We can also thank the leadership of the new general he placed in charge there, David Petraeus, who may be the foremost expert in the world on counter-insurgency warfare. And we can thank those serving in our military in Iraq who engaged local Iraqi tribal leaders and convinced them America was their friend and AQI their enemy.
Al-Qaida's loss of the hearts and minds of ordinary Iraqis began in Anbar Province, which had been written off as a basket case, and spread out from there.
Now, in Operation Lion's Roar the Iraqi army and the U.S. 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment is destroying the fraction of terrorists who are left. More than 1,000 AQI operatives have already been apprehended.
Sunday Times reporter Marie Colvin, traveling with Iraqi forces in Mosul, found little AQI presence even in bullet-ridden residential areas that were once insurgency strongholds, and reported that the terrorists have lost control of its Mosul urban base, with what is left of the organization having fled south into the countryside.
COMMENT: The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) held public meetings on July 10 (Memphis), July 15 (Nashville), and July 17 (Knoxville), 2008, to gather public input on the general concept of tolling.
The Tennessee General Assembly has authorized TDOT to study possible toll projects and gather input from citizens. These meetings were intended to reach out to the public and hear their thoughts. These meetings did not focus on any particular project, but the concept of tolling in general and what it could bring to the State of Tennessee. Representatives of TDOT were available to provide information on this topic.
I suspect you, like me, missed these meetings. However if you OPPOSE (or support) toll roads you can still make your voice heard. Written statements and other exhibits to be included in the project transcript may be submitted within twenty-one (21) days after the meeting date to the following address: Project Comments
Tennessee Department of Transportation
Suite 700, James K. Polk Building
505 Deaderick Street
Nashville, TN 37243-0332
No toll road if public opposed
TDOT official meets with people worried about Knox parkway
Tennessee Department of Transportation Commissioner Gerald Nicely drew a round of applause Thursday when he promised that the proposed Knoxville Parkway won't be a toll road if the public is opposed to the idea.
It was the only applause he drew during the 90-minute meeting at Bearden High School, which was attended by about 50 people.
TDOT officials had billed the meeting as a chance to explore the concept of toll roads in general, but the audience members made it clear their minds were on the prospect that the controversial parkway might be selected as a pilot toll road.
Nicely and other officials, including TDOT Chief of Environment and Planning Ed Cole, explained that the Legislature has authorized TDOT to look at possibly building toll roads, but included the caveat that "strong public support" is a prerequisite for moving forward.
During a following question-and-answer session, Knoxville resident David Cochran asked Nicely to define "strong public support" for the audience, most of whom clearly were opposed to tolls.
"That's one of the things we're doing here tonight," Nicely said. "I don't think I can define 'strong public support' tonight."
Nicely's response initially drew snickers and groans from the crowd, but he found himself showered with applause after adding: "There probably is more opposition than there is support for the project. … If that trend continues, we would not proceed."
TDOT is conducting an extended study on the possibility of funding the parkway as a toll road, one of several possible pilot projects across the state. It would include the so-called "Orange Route" that would connect Interstate 75 north of Knoxville in Anderson County with I-40/75 in Loudon County. It ultimately also could connect I-75 in Anderson County to I-40 east of Knoxville, at Exit 409 near the Jefferson/Sevier county line.
To continue reading, go to http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2008/jul/18/no-toll-road-if-public-opposed/
COMMENT: The first article was written by our wonderful Texas Eagle Forum President, Cathie Adams. Texans have raised such opposition that they have had an impact on this issue. Those Texans are serious about protecting their land!!
RECOMMENDED: Dr. Jerome Corsi has written THE book on this issue: The Late, Great USA: The Coming Merger with Mexico and Canada. In the New York Times bestseller The Late Great USA: The Coming Merger with Mexico and Canada, Jerome Corsi proves that the benignly-named "Security and Prosperity Partnership," created at a meeting between George W. Bush, Stephen Harper and Vincente Fox, is in fact the same kind of regional integration plan that led Europe to form the EU. According to Corsi, the elites in Europe who wanted to create a European nation knew that "it would be necessary to conceal from the peoples of Europe just what was being done in their name until the process was so far advanced that it had become irreversible." Could the same thing be happening here? Is American sovereignty doomed? Available at Amazon.com.
See second article: Texas Corridor detour: Officials nix land grab
During this election cycle as you see the candidates for Congress you MUST ask their position on the North American Union. For more information, you can see: http://tneagleforum.org/sovereignty.cfm
Global elitists have been working aggressively to make an “end run” around our national sovereignty in hopes of creating a North American Union modeled after the European Union, EU. Many are members of the Council on Foreign Relations, CFR, and the Trilateral Commission, TLC. Edward Mandell House, former advisor to President Woodrow Wilson, founded the CFR in 1921. In 1973, David Rockefeller, Zbigniew Brzezinski, the Ford Foundation and other top business and political leaders from various countries organized the TLC.
A member of both organizations, Richard Gardner in Foreign Affairs in 1974 wrote, “An end run around national sovereignty, eroding it piece by piece, will accomplish much more than the old-fashioned frontal assault.” Regretfully, both major political parties have embraced his idea of using treaties and trade agreements to create a new economic world order.
The North American Free Trade Agreement, NAFTA, signed by President Bill Clinton in 1994, was the first major “end run” around our national sovereignty as explained by former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger in a Los Angeles Times Op-Ed in 1993: “It [NAFTA] will represent the most creative step toward a new world order taken by any group of countries since the end of the Cold War, and the first step toward an even larger vision of a free-trade zone for the entire Western Hemisphere.NAFTA is not a conventional trade agreement, but the architecture of a new international system.”
Kissinger’s “new international system” began in earnest at the beginning of the new millennium. Looking for a massive transfer of wealth from the U.S. to Mexico, former Mexican President Vicente Fox in a 2000 speech proposed his “20/20 vision” calling for a customs union, a common external tariff, greater coordination of policies, common monetary policies, free flow of labor and money transfers for development of poor Mexican regions of from $10-30 billion.
Two years later in 2002, CFR and TLC member Robert Pastor presented “A North American Community. A Modest Proposal to the Trilateral Commission” to include North American passports, a Permanent Court on Trade and Investment to resolve disputes within NAFTA and final authority over judgments of the U.S. Supreme Court, and an integrated continental plan for transportation and infrastructure.
The following year, in 2003, Governor Rick Perry signed the Trans-Texas Corridor legislation into law, made possible by a George H.W. Bush Executive Order 12803 signed in 1992 that allows for infrastructure privatization, another European model.
In 2004, Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta, in a speech in Fort Worth commended business leaders for their push of the NAFTA highway (Trans-Texas Corridor), citing the U.S. obligation under the NAFTA treaty to enable the “movement of people, of products and of capital across borders.”
Because federal and state highway funds were inadequate to build the Trans-Texas Corridor, President George W. Bush signed the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient, Transportation Equity Act, SAFETEA, in 2005 that legalized charging tolls on existing and planned interstate highways, bridges and tunnels.
To connect the dots on the NAFTA highway:
It all began with President George H.W.Bush’s 1992 Executive Order #12803 that allowed for infrastructure privatization,
The passage of NAFTA in 1994,
Former Mexican President Vicente Fox’ “20-20 vision” in 2000,
Robert Pastor’s “Building a North American Community” in 2002 and
Governor Perry’s 2003 signature creating the Trans-Texas Corridor,
Followed by the SAFETEA Act signed in 2005 by President George W. Bush to legalize tolling of existing and planned highways, bridges and tunnels.
Lest anyone disagree with this “end run” around national sovereignty and the building of the NAFTA highway, the business partner of the company building segments of the Trans-Texas Corridor has purchased 40 newspapers representing communities along the proposed route. Macquarie Media Group Ltd, a subsidiary of Macquarie Bank, parent of Macquarie Infrastructure, has a new conduit to convince citizens along the route.
Sometimes referred to as NAFTA Plus, the Security and Prosperity Partnership, SPP, was signed on March 23, 2005 in Waco, Texas, by President Bush, Mexican President Vicente Fox and Prime Minister Paul Martin of Canada.
The Hudson Institute’s 35-page white paper on the SPP reveals, “The most important feature of the SPP design is that it is neither intended to produce a treaty nor an executive agreement like the NAFTA that would require congressional ratification or the passage of implementing legislation in the U.S. The SPP was designed to function within existing administrative authority of the executive branch.”
The CFR document, “Building a North American Community,” states that its recommendations are “explicitly linked” to the SPP, which calls for a “common perimeter” around North America by 2010.
Before Americans unwittingy accept this European Union model, it would be wise to consider a comment by former German President Roman Herzog (1994-1999). He said that the EU threatens their “parliamentary democracy,” noting that 84% of Germany’s laws between 1999 and 2004 came from EU headquarters in Brussels, rather than from its own parliament.
Even so, the new German Chancellor Angela Merkel, also the current president of the European Council, along with President Bush and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso created the Transatlantic Economic Council on April 30, 2007. The goal is to create a Transatlantic Common Market between the U.S. and the EU by 2015.
Economic indicators are that this “end run” around our national sovereignty is costly. Since 2001, America has suffered the seven largest trade deficits in history, the loss of 3.5 million manufacturing jobs and the collapse of the dollar. Gold has gone from $260 an ounce to $1000 and oil from $28 a barrel to more than $100. And Congress just raised the U.S. borrowing authority in the 2009 budget to an all time high of $10.2 trillion.
The recent sale of Bear Stearns to JPMorgan was stage-managed by the Federal Reserve, which disregarded the New York Stock Exchange’s rule that prevents anyone from buying more than 20% of a company without a shareholder vote. While Bear Stearns’ shares were trading at $67 the first week of March 2008, they were sold to JPMorgan at $10, up from the original agreed-to bargain basement price of $2. One year ago, Bear Stearns’ shares were trading as high as $170.
The mentor of former President Bill Clinton, Dr. Carroll Quigley, wrote in his 1966 book, “Tragedy & Hope, A History Of The World In Our Time,” that the goal of investment bankers was “nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole.” All of this done with “secret agreements arrived at in frequent private meetings and conferences.” The Federal Reserve fits snugly into Quigley’s explanation of a “world system of financial control in private hands.”
Our personal privacy is also negatively impacted by this “end run” around national sovereignty. According to Congressman Ron Paul, the 2005 REAL ID bill creates a massive database of sensitive information on American citizens that will be shared with Canada and Mexico.
It also impacts national security. On February 14, 2008, U.S. Air Force Gen. Gene Renuart and Canadian Air Force Lt.-Gen. Marc Dumais signed a Civil Assistance Plan that allows the military from one nation to support the armed forces of the other nation during a civil emergency. This agreement bypasses the Posse Comitatus that prohibits the U.S. military from operating within our borders.
The combination of this Civil Assistance Plan and the May 2007 Presidential Directive 20, which authorizes the president to “declare a national emergency and take over all functions of federal, state, local, territorial and tribal governments,” without Congressional approval, is a frightening scenario that undermines our national security.
Our Declaration of Independence states, “That all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these is life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” Never did our Founders intend the Executive Branch to make secret agreements and sidestep the Legislative Branch altogether, yet that is exactly what is happening.
WHAT YOU CAN DO: Ask your congressman to inject his legislative authority over the Executive Branch. Congress can and must stop the road to an American EU. Share this article with others to inform them that our national sovereignty is at stake. An outcry from grassroots Texans forced our representatives to put a partial moratorium on the Trans-Texas Corridor, and despite the media’s approval of the TTC, scores of angry Texans packed the TTC hearings and made a positive impact.
We need NOT be alarmed while we KEEP WATCH of world events. TEF’s aim in presenting these facts is to inform you and to encourage you to follow Jesus’ directives found in Matthew 24 and 25. Let us live each day to the glory of God as we anticipate His glorious appearing.
Texas Corridor detour: Officials nix land grab
Toll plan tossed: 'Any area that is not along an existing highway will not be considered'
Posted: June 14, 2008
10:56 pm Eastern
Opponents of a plan to build a Trans-Texas Corridor (TTC) road and rail system from Mexico to Oklahoma received welcome news this week, as Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) officials announced their strategy would no longer include building new highway routes southwest of Houston, a plan that would have annexed huge tracts of private land.
The $184 billion TTC project originally called for a 4,000-mile network of transportation corridors, 1,200 feet wide, to be built across Texas. The plan would have taken about a half million agricultural acres out of private hands, leading to a maelstrom of objections from Texas landowners.
But now TxDOT executive Director Amadeo Saenz says plans have changed. In a conference call with reporters he said TxDOT "had narrowed the study area for TTC I-69" and that the department "is going to be considering only existing highway" routes, and "any area that is not along an existing highway will not be considered."
"This is great news for landowners," said John Means, president of the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association. "TSCRA appreciates the agency's decision to not build the toll roads through rural lands that would threaten the private property rights of many of our members."
The TxDOT website states that "the preliminary basis for this decision centers on the review of nearly 28,000 public comments made" on the issue. Saenz added that 47 town hall meetings with Texas residents had further influenced the decision.
Brehham, Tex., State Rep. Lois W. Kolkhorst, who joined in the battle to protect rural lands from the project, told The Huntsville Item, "The real heroes who deserve the credit here are the constituents. I want to thank the thousands of people who joined me in fighting the I-69 TTC for the past 5 years, writing letters, calling and attending meetings to make their voices heard."
1. Obama's Vision for Government-Run Childhood
By Terence P. Jeffrey
CNSNews.com Editor in Chief
June 25, 2008
One of the most dramatic changes in American life in the years since World War II involves the way we raise our children.
We used to do it ourselves. Now, convinced we have better things to do, many of us leave the job to others.
Encouraging this flight from parenthood, Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, has proposed what he calls his "Zero to Five" plan. It is a collection of programs aimed at getting the government involved in the raising of your children from the moment they are born.
"The first part of my plan focuses on providing quality affordable early childhood education to every child in America," Obama said in a November speech. "As president, I will launch a Children's First Agenda that provides care, learning and support to families with children ages zero to five."
"We'll create Early Learning Grants to help states create a system of high-quality early care and education for all young children and their families," he said. "And we'll help more working parents find a safe, affordable place to leave their children during the day by improving the educational quality of our childcare programs and increasing the childcare tax credit."
This week, Obama upped his ante by vowing to "double funding for after-school programs that help children learn and give parents relief."
Obama, of course, will also continue to defend your "right" to hire a physician to kill your child in utero so you won't have to raise the child at all.
The hard evidence that most American parents now leave at least some of the nurturing of even their youngest children to others has been gathered by the U.S. Department of Labor.
An excellent summary of government data on this issue can be found in "Trends in Labor Force Participation of Married Mothers and Infants," a study by Bureau of Labor Statistics economists Sharon R. Cohany and Emy Sok that was published last year.
"In 1948, only about 17 percent of married mothers were in the labor force," wrote Cohany and Sok. "By 1995, their labor force participation rate had reached 70 percent."
Note that these are "married mothers" -- not single moms, who because of illegitimacy, divorce or a husband's death are forced to work outside the home.
In fact, as of 2005 (the latest year cited by Cohany and Sok), more than 53 percent of married American women with infants (babies less than 1 year old) worked outside the home.
Some of the data points to the conclusion that this phenomenon is driven as much by changes in our values as in changes in our economy.
For example, relative poverty was clearly not the most powerful factor driving married mothers of infants to work outside the home. In fact, those whose husbands earned an income ranking in the lowest 20 percent were the least likely to go to work, Cohany and Sok discovered, while those whose husbands earned an income that ranked in the highest 20 percent were the second least likely to work.
Less than half of these relatively poor and relatively rich mothers with infants worked.
Yet, of the married mothers with infants whose husbands earned an income in the middle 20 percent, 64.4 percent worked outside the home.
Similarly, Cohany and Sok discovered: "The more children a woman has, the less likely she is to be in the labor force." Almost 60 percent of married mothers with infants who had only one child worked. Only 36.6 percent of those who had five or more children worked.
In America today, the rarer child makes a scarcer mom.
If you don't know what ACORN (the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) is all about, you better bone up. This left-wing group takes in 40 percent of its revenues from American taxpayers -- you and me -- and has leveraged nearly four decades of government subsidies to fund affiliates that promote the welfare state and undermine capitalism and self-reliance, some of which have been implicated in perpetuating illegal immigration and encouraging voter fraud. A new whistleblower report from the Consumer Rights League claims that Chicago-based ACORN has commingled public tax dollars with political projects.
Who in Washington will fight to ensure that your money isn't being spent on these radical activities?
Don't bother asking Barack Obama. He cut his ideological teeth working with ACORN as a "community organizer" and legal representative. Naturally, ACORN's political action committee has warmly endorsed his presidential candidacy. ACORN head Maude Hurd gushes that Obama is the candidate who "best understands and can affect change on the issues ACORN cares about" -- like ensuring their massive pipeline to your hard-earned money. Let's take a closer look at the ACORN Obama knows.
Last July, ACORN settled the largest case of voter fraud in the history of Washington State. Seven ACORN workers had submitted nearly 2,000 bogus voter registration forms. According to case records, they flipped through phone books for names to use on the forms, including "Leon Spinks," "Frekkie Magoal" and "Fruto Boy Crispila." Three ACORN election hoaxers pleaded guilty in October. A King County prosecutor called ACORN's criminal sabotage "an act of vandalism upon the voter rolls."
The group's vandalism on electoral integrity is systemic. ACORN has been implicated in similar voter fraud schemes in Missouri, Ohio and at least 12 other states. The Wall Street Journal noted: "In Ohio in 2004, a worker for one affiliate was given crack cocaine in exchange for fraudulent registrations that included underage voters, dead voters and pillars of the community named Mary Poppins, Dick Tracy and Jive Turkey. During a congressional hearing in Ohio in the aftermath of the 2004 election, officials from several counties in the state explained ACORN's practice of dumping thousands of registration forms in their lap on the submission deadline, even though the forms had been collected months earlier." In March, Philadelphia elections officials accused the nonprofit advocacy group of filing fraudulent voter registrations in advance of the April 22nd Pennsylvania primary. The charges have been forwarded to the city district attorney's office.
Under the guise of "consumer advocacy," ACORN has received money from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. HUD funds hundreds, if not thousands, of left-wing "anti-poverty" groups across the country led by ACORN. Last October, HUD announced more than $44 million in new housing counseling grants to over 400 state and local efforts. The White House has increased funding for housing counseling by 150 percent since taking office in 2001, despite the role most of these recipients play as activist satellites of the Democratic Party. The AARP scored nearly $400,000 for training; the National Council of La Raza ("The Race") scooped up more than $1.3 million; the National Urban League raked in nearly $1 million; and the ACORN Housing Corporation received more than $1.6 million.
Have you told young couples straining to buy their first home that declining prices of houses are a misfortune?
Senator, concerning the criteria by which you will nominate judges, you said: "We need somebody who's got the heart, the empathy, to recognize what it's like to be a young teenage mom. The empathy to understand what it's like to be poor, or African-American, or gay, or disabled, or old." Such sensitivities might serve an admirable legislator, but what have they to do with judging? Should a judge side with whichever party in a controversy stirs his or her empathy? Is such personalization of the judicial function inimical to the rule of law
• Voting against the confirmation of Chief Justice John Roberts, you said: Deciding "truly difficult cases" should involve "one's deepest values, one's core concerns, one's broader perspectives on how the world works, and the depth and breadth of one's empathy." Is that not essentially how Chief Justice Roger Taney decided the Dred Scott case? Should other factors—say, the language of the constitutional or statutory provision at issue—matter?
• You say, "The insurance companies, the drug companies, they're not going to give up their profits easily when it comes to health care." Why should they? Who will profit from making those industries unprofitable? When pharmaceutical companies have given up their profits, who will fund pharmaceutical innovations, without which there will be much preventable suffering and death? What other industries should "give up their profits"?
• "Exxon Mobil Corporation" ExxonMobil's 2007 profit of $40.6 billion annoys you. Do you know that its profit, relative to its revenue, was smaller than Microsoft's and many other corporations'? And that reducing ExxonMobil's profits will injure people who participate in mu-tual funds, index funds and pension funds that own 52 percent of the company?
• You say "John McCain" is content to "watch [Americans'] home prices decline." So, government should prop up housing prices generally? How? Why? Were prices ideal before the bubble popped? How does a senator know ideal prices? Have you explained to young couples straining to buy their first house that declining prices are a misfortune?
• Telling young people "don't go into corporate America," your wife, Michelle, urged them to become social workers or others in "the helping industry," not "the moneymaking industry." Given that the moneymakers pay for 100 percent of American jobs, in both public and private sectors, is it not helpful?
4. NARAL Catholics Line Up for Obama June 24, 2008; Page A17
You are the Democratic candidate for president. You want to reach out to Catholics. So what do you do when the majority of the elected officials on your National Catholic Advisory Council have the seal of approval from NARAL Pro-Choice America?
That's the position Barack Obama now finds himself in. A few months ago, his Catholic advisory council was announced with great enthusiasm, and Sen. Bob Casey (D., Pa.) was listed as a national co-chair. His appearance at the top of the council sent a clear message: This campaign is determined to recover some of the lost Democratic sheep who have gravitated to the GOP over abortion.
This council does indeed include some Catholics whose pro-life credentials are impeccable, including Minnesota Congressman James Oberstar. But let us also stipulate the obvious: Of the 21 senators, congressmen and governors listed on the council's National Leadership Committee, 17 have a 90%-100% NARAL approval rating. Even Mr. Casey now enjoys a 65% NARAL approval rating.
It's not as if these NARAL scores are outliers: Sen. Obama himself boasts a 100% NARAL rating, and for good reason. In a speech before Planned Parenthood, he declared that the right to an abortion is at stake in this election, and vowed that he would not yield on appointing judges that would uphold Roe v. Wade.
Mr. Obama is for using tax dollars to fund abortions, and against restrictions on partial-birth abortion. In the Illinois Senate, he voted against legislation protecting a child who was born alive despite an abortion. In sum, if you want to know what Mr. Obama's policies mean, it's this: taxpayer-funded abortion on demand.
Not fair, complains the Obama camp. They point to statements supporting adoption. They cite the story about how he removed language about "right-wing ideologues" from one of his Web sites after a pro-life doctor complained. Above all, they say he has acknowledged a moral dimension to abortion, that he's willing to listen, and that he wants to work for fewer abortions.
All very true. Yet this defense reflects a common complaint about the Obama campaign in general: When you look past the soothing language about "change" and the willingness to "listen," the actual policies and voting record are to the left of Ted Kennedy's and Bernie Sanders'.
It's a tough sell to present this record as auguring an America where there are fewer abortions. But some try. Generally there are two lines of argument. The first is to claim that Republicans have done nothing during their time in power to diminish abortion. Plainly this is not the view that Planned Parenthood promotes on its Web site, where President Bush's many actions are chronicled and listed under the heading "war on women." As Mr. Obama himself notes, moreover, Republicans generally do not appoint the kind of judges the pro-choice side demands: That is, judges who can be counted on to impose their own views upon the law on issues that ought properly be left to the American people.
The other line of argument is the They're-Just-As-Bad-As-We-Are defense. Thus the Web sites that go on and on about Catholic social teaching on war and poverty and greed and the death penalty, etc. The implication being, of course, that Republicans are on the wrong side of all these issues – and that simply by enumerating all these concerns, you can somehow balance out the Democratic Party's singular commitment to abortion on demand.
The wife of Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama told a crowd of homosexual activists last week that her husband wants to repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and reverse the rule on homosexuals in the military. Michelle Obama also drew parallels with homosexual advocacy groups and the civil rights movement, referring to events "from Selma to Stonewall."
Speaking to the Democratic National Committee's Gay and Lesbian Leadership Committee last Thursday in New York City, Michelle Obama said her husband supports "a world where federal laws don't discriminate against same-sex relationships, including equal treatment for any relationship recognized under state law."
"That is why he supports robust civil unions," she said. "That is why he has said the federal government should not stand in the way of states that want to decide for themselves how best to pursue equality for gay and lesbian couples -- whether that means a domestic partnership, a civil union or a civil marriage."
The Illinois senator has spoken little about homosexual issues on the campaign trail, but a position paper on his Web site says that Obama wants to "fully repeal the Defense of Marriage Act and enact legislation that would ensure 1,100-plus federal legal rights and benefits currently provided on the basis of marital status are extended to same-sex couples in civil unions and other legally recognized unions."
The DOMA has two parts: one defines marriage as between a man and a woman, and the second part says a homosexual marriage in one state does not have to be recognized in another state.
Such a law could have added impetus since the California Supreme Court ruled last month to legally recognize homosexual marriages. Meanwhile, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont, New Jersey, and New Hampshire have enacted legal unions for homosexual couples either through legislation or court order.
The absence of a federal law could mean that the more than 40 states that have bans -- either constitutional or in statute -- on same-sex marriage would be required to recognize a homosexual marriage license from another state as a legally binding contract.
Sen. Obama's position paper was likely referencing the federal definition provision that would extend Social Security and other government benefits to same-sex couples, said Lynn Wardle, a law professor at Brigham Young University. Nonetheless, this could effectively nationalize same-sex marriage, Wardle said.
"If a judge in San Francisco says 'for Social Security purposes, that's the law,' then a trial judge in San Francisco could affect the whole country," Wardle told Cybercast News Service.
"A marriage is valid where it's performed and valid everywhere, with one exception, if it violates public policy," she said. "As a political move, this would inevitably mean gay marriage in most states. It's a step in nationalizing gay marriage."
Republican presidential candidate John McCain voted for DOMA in 1996 as a federal law. However, the Arizona senator voted with Obama in opposing a federal constitutional amendment to define marriage as between a man and a woman. McCain said his opposition was on grounds of federalism, believing that states should decide on the matter.
In 2006, McCain supported a proposed constitutional amendment in his home state of Arizona to define marriage as only for heterosexual couples, but the amendment failed on the November ballot.
McCain's Web site reads: "The family represents the foundation of Western Civilization and civil society and John McCain believes the institution of marriage is a union between one man and one woman. It is only this definition that sufficiently recognizes the vital and unique role played by mothers and fathers in the raising of children, and the role of the family in shaping, stabilizing, and strengthening communities and our nation."
Mrs. Obama began her New York speech praising the Lawrence v. Texas ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court five years ago that struck down Texas's anti-sodomy law, and said "same-sex couples would never again be persecuted through the use of criminal law."
In comparing the homosexual rights movement with civil rights, Mrs. Obama commented on how far things have come.
"We are all only here because of those who marched and bled and died, from Selma to Stonewall," Mrs. Obama said in reference to Selma, Ala., and the Stonewall Inn in New York City.