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Wednesday, February 01, 2006

State of the Union Highlights

President Bush Delivers State of the Union Address

UPDATE: The democrats refused to applaud when talking about protecting America through the Patriot Act, but were gay about their do nothing strategy to fix Social Security. The President said this about a new effort to fix Social Security,
"I ask you to join me in creating a commission to examine the full impact of baby boom retirements on Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. This commission should include members of Congress of both parties, and offer bipartisan solutions. We need to put aside partisan politics and work together and get this problem solved."
I personally don't care who gets the credit for reforming social security like I don't care if Ted Kennedy gets the credit for "No Child Left Behind". What's important is that Social Security needs fixing. It needs to exists for those who need it and who have been paying into it for years and years. I don't know if the President wanted the glory for SS reform last year, but putting together a bi-partisan comission may at least get democrat pride and ego off the table so that the nation can reform the financial black hole that Social Security has become.

On Iran...
The same is true of Iran, a nation now held hostage by a small clerical elite that is isolating and repressing its people. The regime in that country sponsors terrorists in the Palestinian territories and in Lebanon - and that must come to an end. The Iranian government is defying the world with its nuclear ambitions - and the nations of the world must not permit the Iranian regime to gain nuclear weapons. America will continue to rally the world to confront these threats. And tonight, let me speak directly to the citizens of Iran: America respects you, and we respect your country. We respect your right to choose your own future and win your own freedom. And our Nation hopes one day to be the closest of friends with a free and democratic Iran.
Calling for an overthrow of a dictator's government is certainly a better than going in with guns blazing.

On wiretaps...
It is said that prior to the attacks of September 11th, our government failed to connect the dots of the conspiracy. We now know that two of the hijackers in the United States placed telephone calls to al-Qaida operatives overseas. But we did not know about their plans until it was too late. So to prevent another attack - based on authority given to me by the Constitution and by statute - I have authorized a terrorist surveillance program to aggressively pursue the international communications of suspected al-Qaida operatives and affiliates to and from America. Previous presidents have used the same constitutional authority I have - and Federal courts have approved the use of that authority. Appropriate Members of Congress have been kept informed. This terrorist surveillance program has helped prevent terrorist attacks. It remains essential to the security of America. If there are people inside our country who are talking with al-Qaida, we want to know about it - because we will not sit back and wait to be hit again.
On a good economy...
Our economy is healthy, and vigorous, and growing faster than other major industrialized nations. In the last two-and-a-half years, America has created 4.6 million new jobs - more than Japan and the European Union combined. Even in the face of higher energy prices and natural disasters, the American people have turned in an economic performance that is the envy of the world.
On immigration...
Keeping America competitive requires an immigration system that upholds our laws, reflects our values, and serves the interests of our economy. Our Nation needs orderly and secure borders. To meet this goal, we must have stronger immigration enforcement and border protection. And we must have a rational, humane guest worker program that rejects amnesty ... allows temporary jobs for people who seek them legally ... and reduces smuggling and crime at the border.
On the social health of the nation...
In recent years, America has become a more hopeful Nation. Violent crime rates have fallen to their lowest levels since the 1970s. Welfare cases have dropped by more than half over the past decade. Drug use among youth is down 19 percent since 2001. There are fewer abortions in America than at any point in the last three decades, and the number of children born to teenage mothers has been falling for a dozen years in a row.

These gains are evidence of a quiet transformation - a revolution of conscience, in which a rising generation is finding that a life of personal responsibility is a life of fulfillment. Government has played a role. Wise policies such as welfare reform, drug education, and support for abstinence and adoption have made a difference in the character of our country. And everyone here tonight, Democrat and Republican, has a right to be proud of this record.
On bioethics...
A hopeful society has institutions of science and medicine that do not cut ethical corners, and that recognize the matchless value of every life. Tonight I ask you to pass legislation to prohibit the most egregious abuses of medical research - human cloning in all its forms ... creating or implanting embryos for experiments ... creating human-animal hybrids ... and buying, selling, or patenting human embryos. Human life is a gift from our Creator - and that gift should never be discarded, devalued, or put up for sale.
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Thoughtful Readers Speak:
There is no point in getting upset over animals that contain some amount of human DNA. A human brain is never going to exist in a mouse, or a bacteria, or a plant. We all contain DNA from different organisms right now - viruses insert their entire genenomes into ours. We manipulate life for our benefit on a regular basis, and it just isn't worth getting upset about. In fact, the only people that get upset about it are largely ignorant of the process. For example, if you talk to a hippy about Bt corn, they don't know what it does or how it does it, they just know that frankenfood is going to take over the world.
 
Good point. Human beings are already "animal hybrids"; %99.7 of our genome we share with chimpanzees.

Human cloning is simply another form of reproduction.
 
So, here's another thought. If significantly fewer abortions happen when they are made illegal, shouldn't we expect to see corresponding increases and decreases in the birth rate as the legality of the procedure changes? For example, when Roe V Wade made abortion legal, shouldn't the birth rate have dropped significantly? Is this something we actually see? I don't know, since I haven't looked up the numbers.
 
http://www.johnstonsarchive.net/policy/abortion/graphab.html

erica, I appreciate the approach of asking questions as though we are learning together instead of the dogmatism sometimes displayed.
 
The birth rates in Western nations (especially Japan where abortion is rampant) are at an all-time low. Black America, where 40% of conceptions are aborted, is now a smaller minority than Hispanics.
 
Is the low birth rate in Western nations a function of better health care and women entering the workforce? Or is it a function of women getting abortions all the time? Furthermore, is a low birth rate really such a terrible thing?
 
Yes, both,

Yes. To remain stable, societies need a replacement rate of 2.1. Any lower and the society falls into oblivion given time.
 
Right, but with 6 billion people that isn't going to happen any time soon. Exponential growth of a population also leads to its demise.
 
you cannot prove that exponential growth leads to demise, you can only conjecture.

so can i: with an increased population, civilication productivity would increase as would it's scientific research, medical breakthroughs, social security wouldn't be a problem, heck, we might already be living on the moon.
 
you cannot prove that exponential growth leads to demise, you can only conjecture.

Nonsense. This phenomenon is easily observed in the lab and field, in any organisms. Populations crash when they reach and exceed their ecology's K value.

Go ahead and Wiki for "carrying capacity."

so can i: with an increased population, civilication productivity would increase as would it's scientific research, medical breakthroughs, social security wouldn't be a problem, heck, we might already be living on the moon.

Ah, right. That explains the vast scientific infrastructure, high quality of life, well-maintained utilities, high basic level of education, lack of poverty, sanitation, and roaring space program of such countries as India and China.

Oh, wait. I guess they have none of those things.
 
you cannot prove that exponential growth leads to demise, you can only conjecture.

LOL! We observe insect populations exceeding K and crashing on a regular basis.
 
there you go again equating that which is not equivalent
 
chet, you're slack on your knowledge of geopolitics. the communistic government in china is the reason for its current state.

the factor you are leaving out of the equation is the fact that people innovate, learn, adapt, and make their environment better when they are given the freedom to do so. You are both ignoring this fact.
 
chet, you're slack on your knowledge of geopolitics. the communistic government in china is the reason for its current state.

And India? The most populous democratic nation in the world? If anybody's free for innovation and adaptation, it should be them, according to you.

But I see you didn't even try to address that example. Were you hoping everybody would just forget that India is a capitalist democracy, or what?
 
Given unlimited space and resources, all populations will grow exponentially. The human population has grown exponentially. Why are we so special that K doesn't exist for us? What happens when there isn't any more land to turn into farms, Einstein? You can only get so many bushels/acre, no matter how good your pest control is.
 
chet, India was ruled communistically until 1989 when the berlin wall fell. It has since blossomed to become America's next great competitor.

again, you don't know what you're talking about.
 
i don't doubt that populations grow exponentially, what i doubt is the propaganda that says we need to control the population through forced abortions. what I doubt is that we wouldn't be able to adjust to increased growth.

what I don't doubt it the tremendous innovation that could have come throught 42 million children that we aborted since roe v wade. what I don't doubt is that with the increased population we could have solved every major problem that now faces us; cancer, aids, pollution, etc..

but people like you want to compare us to insects and propagandize the world for evil. your opinion refuses to take into account that which makes us different from animals.

erica, you are the shameful result of a person who has been indoctrinated by evolution propaganda. your refusal to separate man from animal has apparently warped your mind and violated your ability to deterimine good from bad and right from wrong. your type makes me sad for the future of the world.
 
India was freed from Communist opression when the Berlin Wall fell? I don't know what you're smoking, but I want some. Actually, I'm starting to think that you're not really serious. Nobody can be that ill informed.
 
chet, India was ruled communistically until 1989 when the berlin wall fell.

Bravo, Frank, bravo. You had me completely fooled until this, your greatest masterpiece of idiocy yet. I never would have believed that you were simply a parody of Christianist beliefs until this moment, but the idea that India was "communist until the Berlin wall fell" is just too idiotic to be taken seriously.

As I said, bravo. You had me completel taken in until you went just a little too far. It's unbelievable that anybody could be that stupid.
 
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