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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Deists or Christians?

The story goes something like this.  The Founders of our nation were not Christians, they were Deists.  Let’s forget for a moment that nearly half of the signers of the Declaration of Independence had formal training in a Christian seminary.  Let’s also forget about the fact that the colonization of America in the 1600’s included men like John Winthrop and William Bradford who came to America for the specific purpose of religious freedom, specifically to worship the God of the Bible.  Let’s also ignore the preamble to the Treaty of Paris that concluded the Revolutionary War that begins with the words, “In the name of the most holy and triune God.”  We can also ignore George Washington’s active participation in the Anglican Church where he served as a vestryman.  And, let’s ignore the words of Patrick Henry’s Last Will and Testament which reads…

“This is all the Inheritance I can give to my dear family, The religion of Christ can give them one which will make them rich indeed.”

And, finally, let’s forget about these words by Dr. Benjamin Rush, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and one of the most influential Founders…

“My only hope of salvation is in the infinite transcendent love of God manifested to the world by the death of His Son upon the Cross.  Nothing but His blood will wash away my sins.  I rely exclusively upon it.  Come, Lord Jesus! Come quickly!”

No, instead, let’s just look at the Declaration of Independence itself.  After all, the Declaration is the founding document of our Republic.  The Constitution we now live under came years after the Articles of Confederation and the Declaration itself. 

Moreover, while the US Constitution serves as the law of the land, the Declaration of Independence is a manifesto.  It expresses the thoughts and ideas of the Founders as no other document does.  It tells us more about the thinking of the Founders than any other document of that time.  Created by a committee, Thomas Jefferson is given primary responsibility for its creation.

But, before we dive into the Declaration of Independence, let’s try to gain a better understanding of what it means to be a Deist.  After all, that’s what it is claimed that the Founders were.  My American Heritage College Dictionary defines Deism thusly…

“The belief, based on reason, in a God who created the universe and has since assumed no control over life, exerted no influence on nature, and given no supernatural revelation.”

The Bing Dictionary on my computer provides a similar description…

“Rational belief in God: a belief in God based on reason rather than revelation and involving the view that God has set the universe in motion but does not interfere with how it runs.”

And, just so we have three points of reference, the definition of Deism at is a…

1. belief in the existence of a God on the evidence of reason and nature only, with rejection of supernatural revelation (distinguished from theism ). 2. belief in a God who created the world but has since remained indifferent to it.

I checked several other sources and they all say essentially the same thing.  Some use the example of a watchmaker who winds up a watch and then forgets about it.  The idea being that God created the world, and then walked away and forgot about it.  He doesn’t intervene in it, he certainly didn’t send his Son to save it, and he doesn’t have any sort of personal relationship with people in the world.  He is a sort of absent God.

Now, let’s get back to the Declaration of Independence.  There are four references to God in the Declaration of Independence.  The question is, are these references consistent with a Deist God, an absent, uncaring, unconnected God, or are they consistent with any other sort of God, even a particular God such as the Christian God?

The first reference to God in the Declaration is in the preamble to the document and it reads…

“When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bonds which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”

In this instance, God is defined as the God of nature.  This could reasonably be interpreted as the watchmaker God in that God created nature.  But, there is a serious problem with that reasoning, because it goes on to say that God entitles them to dissolve their bonds with England.  A Deist would not believe that God was involved whatsoever.  He created the world and walked away.  He would not, in the Deist view, entitle the signers to anything because he would not care about what the signers or any other human believed.  He would be an absent, uncaring God.  So, the argument that the signers, i.e. the Founders, were Deists falls short right in the beginning of the Declaration of Independence.

The next reference to God in the Declaration is in the very next sentence that reads…

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”

This is more bad news for those who assert that the Founders were Deists.  If God is an absent God, a watchmaker God, what does he care about rights?  How can a Deist God endow mankind with rights?  And, what would he care about creating humans as equal in his sight or under the law?  There is nothing in the first two references in the Declaration of Independence that is consistent with a Deist God, but both of these two references are consistent with a Christian God or a Jewish God.

The third reference to God is found after a recitation of all the grievances that the colonists expressed in regard to the King of England.  This is, in fact, the actual declaration of independence from the Crown, the line in the document that put their lives at risk.  It was an incredibly brave and daring statement that is virtually impossible to appreciate.  The Founders, men of consequence, of learning, and wealth, were putting their lives on the line so that they, their families, their fellow Americans from all walks of life, and you and I could live in freedom. 

This third reference to God reads…

“We, therefore, the representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the name, and by the authority of the good people of these colonies, solemnly publish and declare, that these united colonies are, and of right ought to be free and independent states;”

There is nothing in this statement, declaring their freedom and independence, consistent with a Deist God, nothing at all.  Why would the signers appeal to an absent, uncaring, watchmaker God?  That would have been silly, and these were not silly men.  Why would they have called God the “Judge of the world” if they believed that he was totally uninvolved with them and their lives?  However, if you were Christian or Jewish, and read the New Testament and/or the Old Testament, you would have understood that God is indeed the “Judge of the world.”  You would have believed that God was totally righteous, without fault.  And, if you were a Christian, you would have believed that this God sent his one and only son, Jesus, as prophesied in the Old Testament and written about in the New Testament, to rescue us from God’s judgment.  Once, again, this reference in the Declaration of Independence to God is totally inconsistent with a Deist God, but totally consistent with a Judeo-Christian God.

The fourth reference to God in the Declaration of Independence follows almost immediately on the heels of the third reference.  It reads…

“And for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.”

Those who assert that the Founders were Deists like to point out that almost all of the Founders used the term “Divine Providence” when referring to God, a term that is out of fashion today.  In fact, the idea of God as the “Divine Providence” comes from a number of Bible verses in the Old Testament such as Psalm 47:8 (God’s Word version)…

“God rules the nations. He sits upon his holy throne.”

It is the concept that while we have free will as Christians, God still mysteriously governs the course of nations and of men.  Or, as George Washington put it…

“It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.”

But, the point is, if you are a Deist who believes God is absent and uninvolved, you can’t rely on “the protection of Divine Providence” since you don’t believe that God is involved in the world.  And, while this idea of an involved God is inconsistent with the definition of Deism, it is totally consistent with the Old and New Testaments.  It is totally consistent with the Christian and Jewish faiths.

In summary, the idea of the Founders being Deists is simply made up out of whole cloth.  It doesn’t stand up to even a cursory reading of the Declaration of Independence.  If you still believe that the Founders were Deists, you must first reject the Declaration as a statement of the Founders.  Second, you can cling to the belief that some of the Founders were Deists, and that may be true.  But, for all of the signers of the Declaration to agree with the wording of the Declaration, it has to mean that they were, by a vast majority, men who believed in a God who was personally involved in their lives.  And, if you dig deeper into the books they read, the churches they founded, the churches they attended, their writings, and their speeches it is difficult to rationally conclude that they were not Christians.  This is not to say that each and every Founder was a Christian, nor is it to say that anyone can say with absolute certainty what they believed in their heart.  That’s up to God.  What we can reliably conclude is that their faith was so important to them that they included references to a specific, involved God four times in the most important document they signed in their lives.

Before I conclude, I want to acknowledge a speech that my wife and I were recently privileged to hear that was given by Kirby Wilbur, the Director of the National Journalism Center ( a group operated by Young America’s Foundation (, a client of Eberle Associates (  It was from Kirby that I received the concept and inspiration for this blog.  I hope that you have found it to be enlightening.

You and I must not let the wishful and misguided thinking of those that reject our Judeo-Christian heritage alter history.  Volumes have been written by serious scholars on our American History.  These scholars do not skip over or minimize the powerful impact of Christianity upon our history.  To eliminate the influence of Christianity upon the Founders and upon their understanding of human nature is to totally and dangerously distort history.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Servants or Masters?

The concept of elected officials being public servants seems to be lost on the current incumbent of the White House.  That is unfortunate, because when elected officials begin thinking of themselves as the masters, and the voters who elected them as their servants, democracy has been turned on its head. 

The first Americans traced their freedom to the issuing of the Magna Carta in 1215.  Powerful feudal lords forced English King John to sign the Magna Carta.  This founding document established the rule of law as being above and over the rule of any man.  It established Englishmen as free men with defined liberties and it established that the rule of the King could not be arbitrary, that is, above the law.  Americans from the 1600s until the time of the American Revolution stood proud as British citizens whose individual freedom was protected by the Magna Carta.

In reality, although King John signed the Magna Carta, he and his successors did not adhere to it closely.  Nevertheless, this document established the concept of the rule of law, not the rule of man.  And, although Parliament had been established long before 1776, its power was limited and the power of the King of England was nearly unlimited.  Like Kings before him, King George ignored the Magna Carta whenever he found it desirable. 

At this time King George was a true Monarch.  He was the master, and the English people were his subjects.  As the American Declaration of Independence clearly documents, King George violated the letter and the spirit of the Magna Carta.  His intent and his actions were intended to bring the Americans to heel.  They were to do what he told them to do and they were to knuckle under as his servants.  Yes, the Parliament rubber stamped his actions, but make no mistake, they were the actions of a tyrant.

The Americans rebelled.  And, when they declared their separation from England, they set forth to create a new form of government.  It wasn’t just to be an Athenian democracy or a Roman republic, neither of which was very free or very republican or democratic in nature.  What the American Founders sought was to create a true republic that put almost all power into the hands of the people and that limited the power of those in public office.

President Obama has complained in a radio interview…

“…generally the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties. Says what the states can’t do to you. Says what the Federal government can’t do to you, but doesn’t say what the Federal government or State government must do on your behalf…”

President Obama is right.  It’s not the state that needs protection from the people; it is the people who need protection from the government.  That was the clear understanding of the Founders.  They sought to create a new form a government where the people were all powerful, and the government was limited to specific, enumerated powers.

They knew from personal experience of the danger of an all-powerful monarch who could on a whim strip them of their freedom as British citizens.  They also knew from reading Montesquieu that the power of government must be limited and divided in order for freedom to survive.  Wikipedia says this about Montesquieu…

“Montesquieu was the most frequently quoted authority on government and politics in colonial pre-revolutionary British America, cited more by the American founders than any source except for the Bible. Following the American revolution, Montesquieu's work remained a powerful influence on many of the American founders, most notably James Madison of Virginia, the ‘Father of the Constitution.’ Montesquieu's philosophy that ‘government should be set up so that no man need be afraid of another’ reminded Madison and others that a free and stable foundation for their new national government required a clearly defined and balanced separation of powers.”

And, by relying on the understanding of the Bible as to the imperfect nature of man, the Founders set about creating a government framework wherein no one man or group of men could gain power over American citizens as monarchs had for ages past.  This message of the fallen state of man is repeated clearly throughout the Old and New Testaments of the Bible.  In Ecclesiastes 7:20 it is written, “Certainly, there is no one so righteous on earth that he always does what is good and never sins.”  In Romans 3:23 it says, “Because all people have sinned, they have fallen short of God's glory.”  Indeed, this truth of the imperfection of man is a theme that runs throughout the entire Bible, because the Bible is a rescue tale.  It is the story of God sending his only son, Jesus, to rescue fallen men and women from total separation from God.  If any man could obtain his own perfection, he would not be in need of God.  But, because all have sinned, the only path to heaven is through trust in Jesus. 

The Bible was, as Wikipedia notes, the most read book of the Founders.  There was no way to escape the message of man’s fallen state if someone reads it in even a cursory fashion.  It was this knowledge of the imperfection of man that drove the founders to limit the power of any man or group of men in government. 

As George Washington clearly put it… Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force; like a fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master.”  Washington and the other Founders clearly understood the reality of human nature.  They understood the danger of giving man through government too much power.  They understood, from their reading of history, that it is government and only government that enslaves men, and turns them into pawns of the state.

That’s why the United States Constitution is written giving the government negative rights, as Barack Obama put it.  It is those negative rights that protect you and I from tyranny.

The Founders were well aware of the concept of public service, the idea of someone elected to office being the servant of the people, not vice versa.  It was a concept strongly held by the Founders. 

But, the actions of the Obama Administration during the current government shut down belie their lordly attitude toward American citizens.  In fact, they are spiteful toward Americans.  There have been eleven shutdowns of the federal government since 1980.  Not one of these shutdowns has ever before included…

  • Blocking access to the Lincoln Memorial or any other memorial
  • Canceling all White House tours
  • Shutting down private businesses in or near federal parks
  • Threats to stop mailing out Social Security checks
  • Blocking access to the permanent residences of in holders inside of national parks.
  • Chaining off access to the World War II Memorial
  • Shutting down Ford’s Theater in Washington, DC
  • Closing down the Grand Canyon even though the state of Arizona agreed to pay all necessary costs to keep it open

These and many more outrageous and arrogant steps taken by the Obama Administration have been taken with one sole purpose, to cause pain to the American people.  Their goal is to frustrate and aggravate Americans by these closures, and blame it all on the Republicans.  These are the steps that a master takes to punish his servants.  This is the prevailing attitude of the Obama White House.  We are the servants, and he is the master.

Our President does not hesitate to fly off to Florida to play golf with Tiger Woods and spend $148,000 per hour riding in Air Force One, but he can’t seem to find the pittance needed to keep the White House tours open.

These aren’t acts caused by a shortage of funds caused by the Republicans.  It is the spiteful act of a President who refuses to negotiate with the Republicans over the  Continuing Resolution for funding the government.  These are arrogant and petty attempts by the Administration to punish and hurt the people it purportedly serves. 

Does the President care about you and me?  Does he care about the law of the land?  Does he care about the huge debt he has run up?  Does he understand that he is the servant and we are the masters?  No, he apparently does not.

The President absolutely refuses to negotiate, even though on 27 previous occasions riders have been attached to a Continuing Resolution for funding.  And, in each of those occasions, the then President worked with Congress to resolve their differences.  But, the principle of non-negotiation set forth by President Obama is understandable.  After all, he taught Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals and one of Alinsky’s rules is never negotiate with your enemy.  And, President Obama has made it clear on more than one occasion that you are I are his enemies.  In the 2008 election he identified Republicans as his “enemies.”

Rules for Radicals also explains his unnecessary punishment of American citizens during the government shutdown.  Rule 12 says, “Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions. (This is cruel, but very effective. Direct, personalized criticism and ridicule works.)”  This disciple of Saul Alinsky is our President of the United States.

President Obama is playing every card in Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals, but it is not working.  He is blaming the Republicans for the hardships he has intentionally imposed on American citizens, but they are not taking the bait.  The Republicans’ own internal polling shows them winning the debate as long as they frame it accurately, i.e., the President refuses to negotiate, and the Republicans are willing to negotiate.  Even a dunderhead can understand that the President is an unfair bully and the Republicans are playing fair and above board.

But, of course, the President denies it all.  Barack Obama recently told CNBC host John Harwood…

“I think it’s fair to say that during the course of my Presidency I have bent over backwards to work with the Republican Party, and have purposely kept my rhetoric down.  I think I’m pretty well known for being a calm guy.  Sometimes people think I’m too calm.”

You have got to give it to him, the guy can tell a whopper with a straight face.

He must have forgotten his comments a few days earlier in Maryland where he said…

“The Speaker of the House, John Boehner…” is acting as he is only because… “…he doesn’t want to anger the extremists in his party.  That’s all.  That’s what this whole thing is about.”  The President also talked about… “…the Republican obsession with denying affordable health insurance to millions of American.  That’s all this has become about.  That seems to be the only thing that unites the Republican Party these days.” 

And, of course his surrogates in Congress and members of the White House staff have talked about the Republicans being “terrorists” who are “holding us hostage” with “bombs strapped to their chest.” 

And then, when Mr. Harwood mentioned that Wall Street, i.e. the stock market, was taking the government shutdown calmly, the President actually complained about it.  He seeks problems in the stock market so he can blame it on the Republicans.  The President responded to Mr. Harwood, “No, I think this time is different, they should be concerned.”  In other words, it’s just fine and dandy with Mr. Obama if the stock market is in an upheaval and millions of Americans lose money because of it.  No problem, as long as it advances his political agenda.  With Barack Obama everything is politics.  Nothing is about the good of the country.

But, make no mistake about it, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama would not be making such outrageous statements, and issuing such personal attacks if they did not think they are losing this debate.  The Republicans are willing to negotiate.  The President is not willing to negotiate.  They lose that argument every time.  Americans expect fairness, and when one party won’t negotiate, they see that as unfair.

My best guess is that since the entire apparatus of the new Obamacare online system has broken down the President will use it as an excuse to postpone enrollment for six months or a year.  He never will, of course, admit that the GOP won, but it will be their victory.  It will be yours and mine too.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Retribution or Reconciliation?

Earlier this year, on February 27, 2013, the United States Supreme Court heard an argument by a lawyer representing Shelby County, Alabama, in regard to the applicability and current accuracy of the premise upon which the 1965 Voting Rights Act was based.  The 1965 Voting Rights Act was passed by Congress over opposition from Democrats (primarily in the South) yet signed into law by President Lyndon Baines Johnson.  It was a landmark decision in the vein of the Reconstruction laws that applied to the Southern states following the Civil War.  Prior to that, it was generally understood that all federal laws had to apply equally to all citizens and to all states.  Article IV, Section 2 of the United States Constitution states…

"The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States."

The Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments to the US Constitution specifically protect the rights of African Americans and serve as the bedrock of protections of all citizens against discrimination, especially the right to vote.  Section 5 of the Fourteenth Amendment specifically states

"The Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation the provisions of this article."

While the intent and the letter of the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments is abundantly clear, they alone did not solve the problem of discrimination in the South.  As noted in a previous blog, the election of our first Progressive (i.e. liberal) President, Woodrow Wilson, dramatically reversed the progress in race relations and economic advancement in the South.  Wilson, an outspoken racist who grew up in the deep South (born in Virginia, but raised in Georgia), helped to engineer the re-segregation of the South.  Wilson, a student and disciple of Richard T. Ely [an influential founder of the Progressive movement], first re-segregated the Federal Government, reversing the policies of Republican Presidents before him.  Ely and others, who believed that African Americans had not sufficiently progressed ethically, then went about encouraging and achieving the re-segregation of the South.

The re-segregation of the South led to the infamous Jim Crow era that lasted from the time of Ely until the 1960s.  Through the use of poll taxes, threats, and physical harassment, African Americans were denied the right to vote.  It was a sad era in American history.  Repeatedly, Republicans in Congress tried to pass civil rights legislation, but it was continually voted down or watered down by the Democrat majorities in Congress up until 1964.

Finally, in 1964, a strong Civil Rights Act was passed by Congress over the objections of Southern Democrats and Democrats from as far North as Montana.  Similarly, in 1965, the historic Voting Rights Act was passed.

The argument made by Shelby County, Alabama, was that today, 48 years after the Voting Rights bill was passed, race relations, economic opportunities, and voting access to all citizens in that county are dramatically different than they were in 1965.  In other words, they argued before the Court that the premise upon which the Voting Rights Act was based, that Alabama and other Southern states actively discriminate against African Americans, is no longer true today. 

The Supreme Court ruled in June 2013, that it is unjustified to assume that no racial progress has been made in the states to which the 1965 Voting Rights legislation applies.  However, the Court did not state that no restrictions could apply, but simply that the Congress should evaluate the current status of these states and form a new basis for applying the Voting Rights Act.  Moreover, the Court did not view the requirement for government issued photo identification as discriminatory.

This ruling set off a firestorm of outrage on the left by many who had been active in the civil rights movement back in the 1960s, and those of other motivations.  But, before I get into that outrage, let me provide you with a quote from USA Today on the ruling…

"Declaring that 'our country has changed in the past 50 years,' Chief Justice John Roberts and the court's four other conservatives said the 1965 law cannot be enforced unless Congress updates it to account for a half-century of civil rights advances."

Apparently, Americans from all walks of life, all political parties, political philosophies, all ages, and both men and women agree with Chief Justice Robert's appraisal that racial progress has been made over the past 50 years.  A survey taken by Elon University in North Carolina of North Carolina residents (I picked this one because it is in the South) showed these amazing results…

Now, remember this is a poll of North Carolina citizens only.  In each and every category, no matter how you slice it, every group favors the use of government issued photo identification cards as a requirement to vote.

Similar national polls show support for government issued photo identifications voter cards to be above 70%.  This includes all categories shown above, plus folks who identify themselves as liberals! In all cases and in all groups the support is above 50%.

So the question crosses my mind, if African Americans living in the South support government issued ID voter cards, is there any doubt that "our country has changed in the last 50 years?  Is there really any likelihood that photo identification cards will negatively impact minority voting?  If all minority groups support government issued voter identification cards, they must not feel that the requirement that a voter show a government issued photo identification card will dissuade them from voting.

So, then, what is the objection to using ID cards to provide integrity in the voting system?  Why the opposition to securing the validity of the voting franchise?  Why the outrage at the Supreme Court ruling?

The Alabama law and most other voter security laws (they exist in 34 states), allow everyone one to vote, even those without a government issued photo ID, on a provisional basis.  In other words, even if you do not have an ID card, you can cast your ballot provisionally until it has been verified that you are who you claim to be.

And, frankly, virtually everyone has a government issued photo ID card today.  Such cards are required to receive food stamps, drive a car, purchase liquor or cigarettes, etc.  Moreover, in those states that require a photo ID to vote, you can get one for free from a local state office.  How much easier can we make it to vote?

But now, let's talk about the outrage. 

I have worked with a lawyer in New York City.  Although we have never met, I have talked with him on several occasions on the telephone in regard to a legal matter in which both he and I were interested.  I believe he is a very sincere man with strong principles.  I do not agree with him politically, but I believe he is honest, competent, and desires justice.

When the US Supreme Court first heard the Shelby County, Alabama, case my acquaintance in New York City was outraged.  He sent out a news release on the comments made by the Judges during oral arguments and he was livid.  This is, in part, what his news release said…

"In August 1968, three years after the Voting Rights Act was passed, Henrietta Wright began her testimony on August 10th in the first voting rights damage suit in a Federal United States District Court in a Mississippi courtroom. She was suing Sheriff John Wages, the Sheriff who brutally beat her, hospitalized her and jailed her because she tried to register to vote on August 25, 1965 -- 20 days after the historic act was passed.

When the first voting rights suit was filed by the Department of Justice, Winona County, Mississippi, had 7,639 white persons and 7,250 Negroes of voting age. At least 5,343 white persons were registered to vote.

I was Mrs. Wright's lawyer."

My friend goes on to explain how Henrietta Wright was beaten up and mistreated by the police in Winona County, Mississippi, just because she tried to register to vote.  It is a very emotional and, I am sure, absolutely true story.  It describes a shocking case of voting rights abuse.  For this lawyer, it was just yesterday that this trial took place.  He story is vivid and his passion for justice shows through as he tells the story…

"Henrietta Wright's handcuffs were removed. She spent that night in jail, with no offer of dinner. The next morning Wages, Miller, Morgan, and Cross[the Sheriff and his deputies] entered her cell, dragged her off the cot, and slammed her head and back against the concrete floor. They kneed her in the stomach, thighs, and mouth, knocking out two front teeth, her mouth filling with blood. She resisted as best she could. They tried to handcuff her to keep her from fighting back, but they were not able to get more than one lock snapped on.

Her damage trial lasted a week. A constant angry white crowd congregated each day, all day, outside the courthouse. Mrs. Wright and I were surrounded, cornered, bumped and threatened as we came and went to the courthouse. I got phone calls at my hotel threatening, 'Slick, you won't leave town alive'.

The all-white jury deliberated for two hours. We lost the case, but we won. Mrs. Wright won first by trying to vote, then by merely bringing the suit and making the Sheriff face her lawyer and her cross examination, and by the fact that an all-white jury needed two hours to deliberate and did not return an immediate verdict against Mrs. Wright.

Mrs. Wright was cheered as she left the courthouse by some of her neighbors who, after hearing of the verdict, came to support and protect her after she left the courthouse.

It is now 45 years after Mrs. Wright's trial. On February 27, 2013, the Supreme Court heard Alabama's attack that the voting Rights Act could no longer stop states from discriminating against black voters. The lawyers for Shelby County, Alabama, argued that the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was no longer necessary in 2006 for times had changed."

You can see from reading his news release that he is still infuriated by what happened to Mrs. Wright, and he honestly believes that nothing has changed in the South.  This is what he said about the oral arguments before the Supreme Court in the Shelby County, Alabama, case…

"Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., in support of Alabama's position, rhetorically asked whether 'the citizens in the South are more racist than citizens in the North.' Justice Roberts tried to show it was unfair to single out the South for racial discrimination and that the law was now being unequally applied; and that this unequal application may be more troublesome than the racial discrimination itself. Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, whose vote was known to be critical, then rhetorically asked the government lawyer whether Alabama today is an 'independent sovereign' or whether it must live 'under the trusteeship of the United States government.'

But it was Justice Antonin Scalia who had the temerity to say that the Voting Rights Act, a great civil rights landmark, now amounted to a 'perpetuation of racial entitlement.'"

In my friend's eyes, nothing has changed in nearly 50 years.  The South is today, in his mind, just as racist and bigoted as it was 45 years ago.  I can almost understand his ire, but his position is clearly one based on his personal experience, and not on facts.

I think we can trust African Americans living in North Carolina when it comes to whether or not the requirement for government issued photo ID cards to secure the integrity of the ballot box will keep them from voting.  And, as far as nothing has changed is concerned, African Americans are returning to the South from the North, for jobs and for retirement.

In an article for the Pittsburg Post-Gazette, Daniel DiSalvo, an assistant professor of political science at the City College of New York, wrote of the remigration of blacks from the North to the South.  Other major publications have also taken note of this phenomenon.  This is some of what Professor DiSalvo reported…

"A century ago, nine of 10 African-Americans lived in the South, primarily in formerly Confederate states where segregation reigned. Then, in the 1920s, blacks began heading north, both to escape the racism of Jim Crow and to seek work as southern agriculture grew increasingly mechanized. 'From World War I to the 1970s, some 6 million black Americans fled the American South for an uncertain existence in the urban North and West,' wrote author Isabel Wilkerson in [her book] 'The Warmth of Other Suns.'

Principal destinations in the Great Migration, as the exodus came to be called, included Chicago, Detroit and New York City, and carried tremendous political implications, both good and bad. It helped spur the civil rights movement, but it also trapped many blacks in urban ghettos. More recently, the Great Migration has reversed itself, with blacks returning to the South."

He goes on…

"The New York Times noticed in the early 1970s that, for the first time, more blacks were moving from the North to the South than vice versa. Last year, the Times described the South's share of black population growth as 'about half the country's total in the 1970s, two-thirds in the 1990s and three-quarters in the decade that just ended.'

Many of the migrants are "buppies" -- young, college-educated, upwardly mobile black professionals -- and older retirees. Over the last two decades, according to the Census, the states with the biggest gains in black population have been Georgia, South Carolina, Virginia, Texas and Florida. New York, Illinois and Michigan have seen the greatest losses. Today, 57 percent of American blacks live in the South -- the highest percentage in a half-century."

Professor DiSalvo sums the remigration of blacks from the North to the South this way…

"The first is the push and pull of job markets. States in the Northeast and on the West Coast, where liberalism has been strongest, tend to have powerful public-sector unions, high taxes and heavy regulations, which translate into fewer private-sector jobs. In southern locales, where taxes are lower and regulations lighter, employment has grown faster; the fastest-growing cities for job creation between 2000 and 2010 were Austin, Raleigh, San Antonio, Houston, Charlotte and Oklahoma City. For upwardly mobile blacks, the job-creating South represents a new land of opportunity.

The second reason for blacks' southward migration is the North's higher housing prices and property tax rates. The 2010 median single-family home price in northeastern metro areas was $243,900, compared with $153,700 in southern metro areas, according to the National Association of Realtors. Overall cost of living is an issue, too: Groceries, utility bills, housing and health care cost less south of the Mason-Dixon Line. High costs in the North make life difficult for the middle class regardless of color, but they pose a particular challenge to black families. From 2005 to 2009, according to a Pew survey, inflation-adjusted wealth fell by 16 percent among white households but by 53 percent among black ones.

Third, high taxes in northern cities don't always translate into effective public services. Public schools are a prime example: Though class sizes have shrunk and average per-pupil spending has increased markedly over the last three decades, schools with large black populations continue to perform poorly. In search of a solution, blacks have become far more amenable than other groups to experiments with vouchers and charter schools.

Finally, many blacks moving to the South are retirees who, like other older Americans, are seeking better weather. Over the past decade, Florida has attracted more black migrants than any other state. Sociologists Calvin Beale and Glenn Fuguitt have found that black retirees are moving not only to classic retirement destinations in the South but also to 'a cross-section of southern counties from which thousands of blacks migrated during the exodus from farming in the 20 years or so after World War II.' Many may be responding to what anthropologist Carol Stack describes as a 'call to home.'"

From this data it is impossible for anyone to conclude that nothing has changed in the South over the past 50 years.  Can anyone seriously argue that tens of thousands of African Americans would willingly move from the North to the South for jobs and for retirement if they thought they would be discriminated against, especially in the voting process? 

I am confident that my lawyer friend is sincere in his beliefs.  He is just wrong.  There is no logic, and there are no facts to support his argument.  But, I understand how and why he clings to these false ideas.

Sadly, my friend is not alone in his false conclusions.  No less than the Attorney General of the United States, Eric Holder, is throwing about wild accusations that the required use of government issued photo ID cards is designed to suppress the black vote and that those behind this movement are racists.  In the Wall Street Journal editorial of October 8, 2013, the editors say in regard to his lawsuit against North Carolina's photo ID law…

"According to Holder, this [the law requiring a government issued ID as a requirement for voting] amounts to a shocking return to the Jim Crow era.  He describes these modest measures to secure the integrity of the ballot as 'aggressive steps to curtail the voting rights of African Americans.'  And he is suing the state to bring it back under the federal supervision of the Voting Rights Act for all of its future voting-law changes."

What a disaster this would be.  According to J. Christians Adams, a former attorney in the Civil Rights Division of the DOJ, attorneys in that division not only refused to enforce the law, but stood by as politicians to their liking corrupted the voting process.  Attorney General Holder is defying the ruling of the Supreme Court with his lawsuit, which is sure to be the first of many if he is successful.  To again quote the Wall Street Journal editorial…

"Under Section 3 of the Act [1965 Voting Rights Act], states can be required to get federal preclearance if a court finds that the state has intentionally discriminated against minorities in its voting laws.  That's a high legal bar that the Justice Department will find hard to prove, especially since many of the states' [North Carolina and Texas] voter ID provisions are widespread in other states."

Beyond the unsubstantiated charges that the requirement of photo IDs will result in minority voter suppression, the argument is made that there is no need for ballot security because instances of voter fraud are rare and insignificant.  As WSJ contributing editor John Fund has documented in his book, Stealing Elections, voter fraud is a real and significant danger across our nation.  Voter fraud is widespread and has undoubtedly changed the outcome of many close elections.

In fact, former and very liberal US Supreme Associate Justice John Paul Stevens supported the constitutionality of a strict Indiana voter ID law designed to combat fraud. Justice Stevens, who personally encountered voter fraud while serving on various reform commissions in his native Chicago, spoke for a six-member majority. In a decision two years earlier clearing the way for an Arizona ID law, the Court had declared in a unanimous opinion that…

"…confidence in the integrity of our electoral processes is essential to the functioning of our participatory democracy. Voter fraud drives honest citizens out of the democratic process and breeds distrust of our government. Voters who fear their legitimate votes will be outweighed by fraudulent ones will feel disenfranchised."

To sum it up, there are five reasons used to oppose enhancing the integrity of the voting process via government issued photo identification cards…

  1. Nothing Has Changed.  Nothing has changed in the South in regard to discrimination of African Americans.  It is just as bad today as it was in 1965.
  2. ID Cards Will Suppress Black Voting.  The very existence of requiring photo identification in order to vote will unfairly discourage black and other minority voting.
  3. No Danger of Voter Fraud.  There is no credible evidence or danger of widespread voter fraud.
  4. Political Advantage.  There is a political advantage in accusing the Republicans of wanting to suppress black and other minority voting by requiring voter ID cards.  It enables Democrats to scare black voters into believing that Republicans are racists.
  5. Impediment to Vote Theft.  The dishonest and crooked see voter ID cards as an impediment to vote theft.

If you believe nothing has changed, you are certainly entitled to your view, even though it runs totally counter to objective data.  Yes, racism exists and it will always exist.  It is a matter of the heart, not a matter of the law.

If you believe that voter ID cards will suppress black voting, there is just no evidence to support that belief.  Those affected directly do not fear voter ID requirements.  If you want to promote this idea, you need supporting evidence.

If you oppose voter ID cards for political advantage, shame on you.  You are a part of the problem, not a part of the solution.  You seek to divide Americans for political gain, not unite them for the common good.  You are driven by anger and seek revenge, not reconciliation.  You seek power over honesty and integrity in government. 

And, if you oppose voter ID cards because you want to encourage vote theft, you belong behind bars.  You are a crook.

Of all the bad policies promoted by our President and his Administration, I despise his conscious efforts to divide Americans the most.  Leaders do not divide, they unite, they encourage harmony.

The message of Christianity is reconciliation.  Through Jesus' death on the cross, man is reconciled to God.  Jesus died for our sins on the cross, so that we can live with him in perfect harmony forever in heaven.  As a Christian, I am to forgo retribution and instead forgive.  I am to forgive not only my friends, but also my enemies.  America is known as a nation that forgives, thanks to our Christian heritage.  When someone in public office admits their guilt, we are quick to forgive.

If we only had a leader in the White House whose goal was to reconcile black and white Americans, much progress could be made toward unity and harmony in our land.  Everyone would benefit.  Instead, we have a President and an Attorney General who either believe that nothing has changed and/or they encourage division for political gain.  Shame on them!

A few years ago, the late Chuck Colson wrote about a predominately white Baptist Church in the deep South.  I think it was in Montgomery, Alabama, but it really makes no difference.  The story he related took place in the late 1980s or early 1990s. 

Members of the church slowly, but firmly, came to the realization of their sin in resenting their black brothers and sisters, and of not working with them and for them in spreading the Gospel of Jesus.  One Sunday morning, the entire church went to a nearby predominately black Baptist church and expressed their repentance for their sinful attitude and actions.  On that Sunday morning true reconciliation occurred.  And, from that point forward, the two churches have worked together, socialized together, and prayed together.

This is just one anecdote, but there are many more of a changed and repentant South.  As a Christian, I know that in God's eyes to hate someone is to make me guilty of murder (1 John 3:15).  Racism is just another name for hatred.  Being a racist and being a Christian are incompatible.

Retribution may feel good at the instant of impact, but it damages the soul.  Reconciliation breeds love and understanding and friendship.  Yes, we have made great progress in race relations over the past 50 years and it should be celebrated.  And, no, we should not overlook or condone racism of any kind. 

And, we should insist that any office holder or political appointee eschew any policy or statement that divides Americans, instead of uniting them.  This should be a minimum expectation of any office holder, Republican or Democrat.  It's written on our coins and on the Great Seal of the United States—E Pluribus Unum.  It means out of many, one.  Diversity is nice, but unity is critical.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Stop the World, I Want to Get Off!

Ever since I became politically aware I have been puzzled by the antics of those of the left.  They take great pride in their intellectual achievements and their “modern” approach to life.  However, every time there seems to be a real scientific advance that benefits society as a whole, they act like Luddites.  Their reasoning is shallow and superficial, they are easily scared, and they rely primarily on emotion, not reason.  Apparently the future scares them.

Let me give you just a few examples.  As early as 1952, the Boeing aircraft company quietly began work on a so-called SST—Supersonic Transport—to carry passengers at supersonic speeds, i.e. faster than the speed of sound (Mach 1; 768 miles per hour).  Just five years earlier, in 1947, Chuck Yeager had broken the sound barrier for the first time in history, flying the experimental Bell X-1 rocket propelled aircraft.  By 1958, Boeing had set up an entire team to develop the SST and by 1960 Boeing was spending more than $1 million annually, about $7.8 million in 2013 dollars.

Not far behind Boeing, but taking a government funding approach, Britain set up their Supersonic Transport Aircraft Committee in 1956.  In 1962, Britain joined with the French to develop their own SST, later to be called the Concorde.  Not to be left in the dust, the Soviet Union began working on an SST, the Tu-144.

On 5th June, 1963, President John F. Kennedy announced that the US would pursue construction of an SST.  Like the British, Kennedy decided to take a government funded program.  It was not necessarily the correct approach.  Why should those who would not be flying aboard the SST subsidize those who would be passengers on it?  From the beginning, Boeing believed it was a market place product and that is why they had spent their own money to develop it.  At the helm of Boeing at that time was Bill Boeing, Jr., who was convinced that the SST could be built without a federal subsidy and be sold to airlines at a profit.  It was perhaps when government intervened that the project went off the rails.

But, let me continue with the story.  The Boeing plane, unlike the Concorde, was to be a large plane that was to carry 277 passengers (later reduced to 230) and had many features that later became common fixtures in modern aircraft such as retractable TV screens. 

Flight time for the SST from New York City to Los Angeles at Mach 2 (2,000 mph) would be cut to about 2 1/2 hours and a flight from Washington, DC to London would take approximately 3 ½ hours.  While the British and French proceeded with their Concorde project, the Boeing plane was never built.

Why?  Because those on the left who oddly call themselves “Progressives” were scared of the SST.  They were sure the sky would fall if the SST was flown over land.  Like the opponents of railroads of a hundred years earlier, who were sure the hens would stop laying if trains passed their barns, liberals were sure the SST would be catastrophic for society.  As it is with almost all liberal arguments, the case against the SST was based primarily on emotion, and little concern was given to the facts of the matter.

While the SST may never have been a marketplace product, it is hard to know that for certain.  While the Concorde seated just 128 passengers, and thus the price of a ticket was very high, that was not true of the Boeing SST.  Boeing had two designs, the aforementioned plane that would hold 230, and designs for a plane that would hold many more passengers.  But alas, it was not to be built. 

The Concorde ceased commercial operation in 2003.  If the government had not intervened, and had the left not stirred up so much emotional opposition, it’s possible, just possible that you and I could be flying from Washington, DC to London in half the time it takes today.

And, while the left does not embrace advances in transportation, they do have a love affair with the past.  They love to build public subway systems similar to those built at the turn of the 20th century, around 1905.  They also like so-called high-speed rail service.  Of course, none of these forms of transportation can sustain themselves on their own.  They are outdated and not a market product.  If they were, they would be built with private funds, make a profit, and not be a continuing burden to taxpayers, most of whom never ride such systems.  The capital cost that is born by the taxpayer for the construction of these boondoggle projects is very costly, running into the billions of dollars, but that is the least of the burden.  Worse yet is the annual subsidy for a typical line which costs millions of dollars.  Embracing government built and run public transit is just another example of the left embracing the past and the approach of socialist Europe.

I could call liberals modern day Luddites, but how can a Luddite be modern?  The Luddite movement existed from 1811 to 1817.  Luddites attacked factories and tried to smash machines.  In Luddite fashion, President Obama verbally attacked ATM machines because he said they destroyed jobs.  What he does not apparently understand is that automation increases efficiency and builds wealth. 

When goods and services are produced more efficiently, the more goods and services everyone in society enjoys.  Economic progress depends on a man or woman being able to produce more than they can consume.  Of course, in order to participate in this automation produced prosperity, you need to have a good education, not necessarily a college education.  When you are well educated you can obtain a job where you can operate a manpower saving machine to produce goods and services far faster and more efficiently than you could do without that machine.  When automation stagnates and efficiency declines, prosperity declines.  It is because of mass production, automation, innovation, and scientific advances that increase efficiency in the marketplace that Americans have become so prosperous.  And, of course, this happens only in a free market.

But, it’s not just ATM machines and SST planes that scare the timid left.  It’s always something.  Do you remember the Alar scare?  Alar, or B 995, is a plant growth regulator that apple growers used to keep apples from falling off their trees before they were ripe.  In effect, Alar made the apple growers more efficient and delivered a better, more fresh and tasty apply to the consumer.  However, liberals have a scientifically unfounded fear of chemicals because very few liberals have degrees in science or engineering.  They simply do not understand how or why things work.

Without doing in-depth research, the far left Natural Resources Defense Council charged that Alar caused cancer.  After a willing and gullible CBS 60 Minutes highlighted this emotional charge, apple growers suffered immense losses, estimated in the hundreds of millions of dollars, and apple consumers were unable to purchase apples at a reasonable price.  Much damage was caused by these wild charges which were later proven to be completely unfounded.  Eventually, the American Council on Science and Health (, exposed the Alar scare as a total fraud.  Today, the Alar story is a reminder of the damage that can be done when the mainstream news media cooperates in creating an irrational, emotional public scare based on propaganda rather than facts.  They call themselves Progressives, but they have a knee-jerk reaction against advances in science when any ally on the left promotes a fraud like the Alar scare.

You can almost hear the left mumbling.  If only we could ride a horse drawn wagon.  If we could only ban automobiles.  If we could only force people out of the suburbs and into anthill living in big cities.  If only we could eat apples from a tree planted by Johnny Appleseed.  If only we could eliminate preservatives from our food?  If only we could ban this and ban that?  The future scares the left.  It reminds me of one of my wife’s favorite movies, You’ve Got Mail, starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan.  There is a character in the movie, Frank Navasky, who is accurately portrayed as someone from the far left.  Frank (played by Greg Kinnear) writes for the Village Voice or some other rag to the left of the Voice.  Frank hates computers and progress.  He loves typewriters and everything in the past.  The future and scientific advances scare Frank, just like they seem to scare today’s liberals.

The latest thing that scares the left is what is commonly called Fracking.  Investopedia ( defines Fracking as

“A slang term for hydraulic fracturing.  Fracking refers to the procedure of creating fractures in rocks and rock formations by injecting fluid into cracks to force them further open.  The larger fissures allow more oil and gas to flow out of the formation and into the wellbore, from where it can be extracted.”

Actually, according to Wikipedia, the history of Fracking goes all the way back to the 1800s...

“Fracturing as a method to stimulate shallow, hard rock oil wells dates back to the 1860s. It was applied by oil producers in Pennsylvania, New York, Kentucky, and West Virginia by using liquid and later also solidified nitroglycerin. Later, the same method was applied to water and natural gas wells.  The idea to use acid as a non-explosive fluid for well stimulation was introduced in the 1930s. Due to acid etching, fractures would not close completely and therefore productivity was enhanced. The same phenomenon was discovered with water injection and squeeze cementing operations.”

I first became aware of the vast amounts of oil and gas reserves trapped in shale in 1966 when I was a young engineer working for Gulf Oil in Port Arthur, Texas.  I remember reading the Oil and Gas Journal ( in the library of the Gulf refinery.  There were a number of articles in the Journal about the large reserves of oil and gas found in shale formations across the nation.  At that time all the oil and gas industry could do was to bemoan the fact that there was no way to extract those reserves.  Fortunately, that is no longer true.

But, while oil and gas fracking has been with us a long time.  The late George P. Mitchell is considered the father of modern day fracking.  Mr. Mitchell died at the age of 94 in July of this year.  His is a great American success story, and it deserves to be told.  And, he deserves our gratitude.  By all accounts, Mr. Mitchell had a penchant for hard work and perseverance.  The son of a Greek immigrant that tended sheep in Greece before immigrating to the United States, Mr. Mitchell worked his way through Texas A&M University, graduating first in his class in petroleum engineering.  The Dallas Morning News, said this of Mitchell in his obituary…

The work of this legendary oilman, who died last week at age 94 in Galveston, is the reason the United States is in the midst of an energy renaissance.  In the past decade, natural gas drilling has created thousands of jobs, been a godsend to American manufacturing, revived U.S. oil and gas production, expanded natural gas exports and reduced CO{-2} emissions as utilities turn away from coal and toward natural gas to fire up their generating plants.  Some now predict North America could be energy independent by the end of this decade.

Until Mitchell’s breakthrough in the 1990s, gas couldn’t be collected cheaply enough from the depths of impermeable shale to warrant exploration companies to even try.  But after two decades of trial and error, he discovered that sand, water and chemicals blasted into rock formations at high pressure could free gas trapped in the shale for capture and storage.  As a result, unprecedented drilling frenzies are underway in the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania, the Barnett Shale in North Texas, the Eagle Ford in South Texas, the Permian Basin in West Texas and the Bakken in North Dakota.

Mr. Mitchell is just another in a long line of American entrepreneurs like Andrew Carnegie, Henry Ford, Henry Firestone, Bill Boeing, Sr., Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and thousands more who have made our lives better and America stronger.  Through their hard work and innovation they have not only created millions of jobs, but increased efficiency so that the standard of living in the United States is higher than any other place in the world.  They could not have started so low on the economic ladder if government had continually gotten in their way.  No, Mr. President, these men did not achieve success because of government, they achieved success because of their hard work, their perseverance, and the blessing of God.

But, liberals do not acknowledge the greatness of America’s entrepreneurs.  They live in a world of make believe.  They really believe that green energy is the wave of the future.  They cling to the past.  We had windmills in the 1800s and once again today we are told by the left to use windmills and other renewal energy sources, even though they cannot exist without government subsidies.  In other words, because subsidies always help a few and damage many, we must lower our standard of living in order to please the left.  Liberals really fear freedom.  It’s unkempt and messy.  They envy the success of entrepreneurs, they are jealous of their honestly earned wealth.  They can’t understand why a businessman without much education who has built a company through hard work, long hours, and at great risk should be more wealthy than they are.  After all, they have a PhD and many successful businessmen don’t even have any college education.

Yet, the left touts themselves as compassionate, yet they don’t seem to care that high energy prices hurt the poor the most.  I realize that I have said this many times before, but this is a very real economic issue for people who are barely making it.  A huge proportion of their income is devoted to energy use, whereas a middle class couple with a family spends proportionately much less.  And, what is the argument for eschewing low cost oil and gas in favor of windmills?  Well, there really isn’t a rational one.  It is, as with nearly all arguments on the left, based on emotion, not reason.

Today, the left likes to make fantasy documentaries like An Inconvenient Truth and Gasland to promote their far left agenda.  I say fantasy because there is virtually no fact or truth in any of these movies.  They are based almost solely on emotion.  Yet, these slick movies seduce the low information voter who knows practically nothing about anything, thus making them an ideal Democrat. 

One of the most intelligent articles on Fracking was written by Englishman Matt Ridley, whose books have sold more than a million copies and have been translated into 30 languages.  Mr. Ridley graduated with BA and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from Oxford University.  He worked for the Economist for nine years as science editor.  Ridley’s paper is entitled “The Five Myths of Fracking.”  You can find it and other excellent Ridley blogs online at  He identifies five things that are repeatedly said about fracking, but are simply untrue:

  1. Shale gas production has polluted aquifers in the United States.
  2. Fracking releases more methane than other forms of gas production.
  3. Fracking uses a worryingly large amount of water.
  4. Fracking uses hundreds of toxic chemicals.
  5. Fracking causes damaging earthquakes.

Here are a few excerpts from his blog on Fracking…

“The total number of aquifers that have been found to be polluted by either fracking fluid or methane gas as a result of fracking in the United States is zero. Case after case has been alleged and found to be untrue.  The Environmental Protection Agency closed its investigation at Dimock, in Pennsylvania, concluding there was no evidence of contamination; abandoned its claim that drilling in Parker County, Texas, had caused methane gas to come out of people’s taps; and withdrew its allegations of water contamination at Pavilion in Wyoming for lack of evidence.  Two recent peer-reviewed studies concluded that groundwater contamination from fracking is ‘ not physically plausible.’”


“…the claim that shale gas production results in more methane release to the atmosphere and hence could be as bad for climate change as coal.  Study after study has refuted it. As a team from Massachusetts Institute of Technology put it: ‘It is incorrect to suggest that shale gas-related hydraulic fracturing has substantially altered the overall [greenhouse gas] intensity of natural gas production.’”

As far as the claim that Fracking uses too much water, Ridley points out that Fracking uses .3% of all the water used in the United States, less than is used by golf courses.  Even in Texas, a big Fracking state, only 1% of all the water used is for Fracking, according to Ridley.

As for chemicals injected into the wells (that now has to be reported by law), Ridley says this…

“Fracking fluid is 99.51% water and sand. In the remaining 0.49% there are just 13 chemicals, all of which can be found in your kitchen, garage or bathroom: citric acid (lemon juice), hydrochloric acid (swimming pools), glutaraldehyde (disinfectant), guar (ice cream), dimethylformamide (plastics), isopropanol (deodorant), borate (hand soap); ammonium persulphate (hair dye); potassium chloride (intravenous drips), sodium carbonate (detergent), ethylene glycol (de-icer), ammonium bisulphite (cosmetics), petroleum distillate (cosmetics).”

And, finally, in regard to earthquakes caused by Fracking, Ridley writes…

“As for earthquakes, Durham University’s definitive survey of all induced earthquakes over many decades concluded that ‘almost all of the resultant seismic activity [from fracking] was on such a small scale that only geoscientists would be able to detect it’ and that mining, geothermal activity or reservoir water storage causes more and bigger tremors.”

In the Wall Street Journal of October 3, 2013, it was reported that the United States is now the number one energy producer in the world, flying past Saudi Arabia and Russia.  That is good news.  We are energy independent, no thanks to President Obama and his allies in Congress.  Why are we energy independent?  We are energy independent because of Fracking, pure and simple.  Fracking means jobs, it means low cost energy, and thus it means a helping hand to the poor to help them get out of poverty.  It means a higher standard of living for all Americans.

Even the emotion driven politicians in New York and in California are giving a second look at Fracking.  Fracking is here to stay, but it is only the latest scientific advance to be hated and despised by the wagon wheel left.  The Luddites will always be with us because there will always be timid, easily scared folks who have a hard time accepting the future. 

But, while the left is clinging to the past, I say…On to the future!