‘Centuries’ of Christian Tradition on ‘Sanctity of Human Life’ Pitted against Left’s ‘Worldview of Death’ thumbnail

‘Centuries’ of Christian Tradition on ‘Sanctity of Human Life’ Pitted against Left’s ‘Worldview of Death’

By Family Research Council

“This whole kerfuffle in Alabama has revealed … the worldview of the Left, which is a worldview of death. And they’re really running with this like they ran after the Dobbs decision,” David Closson, director of Family Research Council’s Center for Biblical Worldview, said on “Washington Watch” Tuesday. “This is not like a one-off,” agreed FRC President Tony Perkins. “The worldview has been revealed. And I think it’s becoming clearer and clearer.”

Enraged by an Alabama Supreme Court decision recognizing the value of all unborn human life, the left-wing media has attempted to carefully curate camera angles of the controversy, so as to portray a hamster as a hippo. First, they launched a scaremongering campaign falsely alleging that Republicans are targeting in vitro fertilization (IVF). Then, Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) opportunistically promoted a bill that wouldn’t so much protect IVF as it would legalize other anti-human practices, such as human cloning, human-animal chimeras, designer babies, and commercial gestational surrogacy.

To browbeat timid opponents into playing along with the charade, the Left trumped up fears of “theocracy” based on a non-binding concurring opinion. “The hand-wringing on the Left … isn’t actually on the majority decision,” Closson noted, but on “a concurring opinion that the chief justice wrote.”

Fear prevents people from thinking clearly, and that’s exactly what the Left is hoping for. If legislators had a moment to sit back and reflect, they would likely realize that “there are moral and spiritual, theological implications here,” said Perkins.

In fact, “There’s a long history within Christian ethics of looking at IVF and saying that … it’s morally fraught,” said Closson. IVF is a process designed for helping infertile couples conceive a child by combining egg and sperm in a laboratory, and then implanting the newly created human life back into the mother’s womb. “As Christians, we believe that at conception, when that sperm and egg come together, you have a human being.”

However, many IVF practitioners create far more embryos than would ever be gestated. “Usually it’s a dozen, maybe even more embryos” that are created, explained Closson. “They selectively choose which ones to implant in the woman.” Of these, all but one will likely be aborted. “Then the others are stored in freezer,” added Closson, resulting today in “millions of frozen embryos in freezers all over the country.” Many are never used and ultimately destroyed.

Despite the moral and ethical pitfalls of IVF, the Alabama Supreme Court did not prohibit the practice, nor even regulate it. All they said was a law protecting children from harm applied to all children, including embryos conceived via IVF. And, in a concurring opinion, Chief Justice Tom Parker added his commentary on the Alabama Constitution’s recognition of the “sanctity of unborn life.”

“That phrase, ‘sanctity of [unborn] life,’ appears in the Alabama Constitution. So, just being a good lawyer, [Parker] said, ‘Where did these words come from? What do these words mean?’ And so, he explored the Christian tradition of understanding sanctity of life, image of God,” Closson summarized.

Closson found it humorous that mainstream media accounts made the mistake of sneering at Parker’s opinion for “quoting 16th-century dead theologians like John Calvin and whatnot.” All their derision proved is that “Christians have been thinking about these issues for a very long time,” he pointed out. “It’s not that we just thought of these in a right-wing think tank last week. We’ve been thinking deeply about these issues for centuries.”

This is humorous because the Left doesn’t realize how far outclassed they are by centuries of brilliant minds. They don’t realize it because they never had to engage with that ancient tradition. Their thinking descends from Karl Marx, and while they might engage with some of his immediate intellectual forebearers (Rousseau, Darwin, Mill), they have little use for a tradition that had already grown wizened before those men were born. “The problem we’re seeing today is the absence of moral truth,” said Perkins. “There are no ethics that are standard and steadfast. It’s a Wild, Wild West.”

One implication of this ethical anarchy is the absence of any limits on what science should do. Just as researchers for the Chinese Communist Party continue to bioengineer deadlier coronaviruses and chimerical monkeys, so the American Left displays an apparent preference for pedantic, utilitarian reasoning over fundamental human rights. Duckworth’s bill would be a go-ahead signal to a lot of ethically dubious research.

“Just because science enables us to do something doesn’t mean we should do it,” argued Perkins. “We should be concerned about both the means and the ends of where this would lead us. And it needs to be guided by biblical truth, by morality … [and by] ethics.”

The fundamental reason why Christians believe all human life is valuable is that “God created man in his own image” (Genesis 1:27). To every human being, this reality imparts “transcendent value,” insisted Perkins. “It’s not value assigned to it. It is value that is inherent in it because it is created in the image of God.”

The road to pushing for designer babies, chimeras, cloning, and surrogacy begins by denying the fundamental reality that all human beings have inherent value because they bear God’s image.

“We need to start calling out a lie for what it is. It is a lie,” Perkins insisted. “Understanding is the first step, but having the confidence of that understanding gives us the ability to push back and say, ‘No, this is not true. It is not right, it is false.’”

Conservatives “playing defense” over the sanctity of unborn life don’t seem to realize that ours is the inherently stronger position. For centuries, Western civilization’s brightest minds have helped develop the implications of this doctrine, which is absolute truth. What does rootless, groundless, post-modern Marxism have to offer in comparison?

The current circumstances are as if the presidential motorcade was suddenly set upon by a gang of youths throwing pea gravel. Exiting the vehicle would be foolish, and waving a white flag would be irresponsible. If conservatives recognize and exploit the advantages of our position, the smear campaign against those standing up for the lives of unborn babies — including those conceived via IVF — can accomplish nothing.

AUTHOR

Joshua Arnold

Joshua Arnold is a senior writer at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

10 Times as Many Teachers Say Trans, CRT Lessons Hurt Rather Than Help Schools thumbnail

10 Times as Many Teachers Say Trans, CRT Lessons Hurt Rather Than Help Schools

By Family Research Council

A new survey reveals a cavernous gap between teachers’ unions and the views of most parents, teenagers, and teachers on whether public schools should teach LGBT ideology to students — and whether parents should have the right to opt their children out of those classes.

While elite teachers’ unions such as the National Education Association (NEA) and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) believe schools should teach sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) classes to children, their customers — parents and students — disagree, as do many of their members, according to a series of new polls released last week.

More than 10 times as many teachers said debates over LGBT ideology, including sexual orientation and gender ideology, “have had a negative impact on their ability to do their job,” compared to 4% who said they improve learning, according to the Pew Research Center: 41% to 4%. Social Studies and English teachers were the most likely to say SOGI topics harmed their teaching time; they were also the classes most likely to discuss those issues, the survey found.

Yet some left-wing activists are working to change that. MacKenzie Scott, the ex-wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, donated $10 million to a group that instructs math teachers to “infuse social justice into mathematics.”

Teachers, Parents, and Students Do Not Want LGBTQIA+ Issues in the Classroom

Half of all teachers say “students should not learn” about gender identity issues in school, including 62% of elementary school teachers, 45% of middle school teachers, and 35% of high school teachers. Among those who believe the school should weigh in on such divisive topics, 33% of teachers say gender “can be different than sex assigned at birth,” while 14% believe in biological sex. More than twice as many elementary teachers believe transgender ideology as believe in biology; the proportion reaches three-to-one among high school teachers (45% vs. 15%).

The poll apparently shows those supportive of transgender beliefs are more likely to address the topic in school. Just under one-in-three teachers say sexual orientation or transgender ideology come up occasionally (21%) or frequently (9%). But teachers who belong to the Democratic Party were 15 points more likely to confess that LGBT issues creep into their classrooms than Republican teachers (36% to 21%).

Although a plurality (48%) of teachers believe parents should be able to opt their children out of transgender ideology indoctrination classes, one-third of instructors believed such classes should be compulsory.

“On both topics, parents’ views were more evenly split than the views of teachers,” according to the Pew survey. For instance, a majority of parents (54%) believe they should be able to determine whether teachers can subject their children to trans ideology.

The largest percentage of teens do not want to hear about LGBT ideology in the classroom, either: 48% say the topics should not be taught at school. Teens are also slightly more likely to believe in biological sex than in transgenderism (26% vs. 25%). But Democratic students are 525% more likely than Republican students to say gender identity is not tied to physiognomy.

Teenage students are more likely to feel uncomfortable hearing about transgender or sexual orientation issues than feel comfortable (33% vs. 29%). More than twice as many Republican students are more likely to feel uncomfortable hearing about such topics than to feel comfortable.

Only 14% of all teens say transgenderism or homosexuality “has never come up in any of their classes.”

The poll seems to indicate many teachers believe parents have too much say in their children’s education. While a plurality of teachers said parents had “the right amount” of influence, teachers were more likely to say parents had “too much influence” than not enough (32% to 19%). Democrats were 42% more likely than Republicans to believe parents had too much influence.

Republican-leaning teachers are more likely to honor parents’ views on these subjects, the poll found: 69% of Republican teachers say schools should not be in the business of teaching LGBT issues, and 80% say parents should decide whether their children attend such classes. Half of Democratic teachers say public school LGBT classes should be mandatory, and 53% say schools should teach transgender ideology.

A strong majority of teachers (58%) belongs to the Democratic Party, Pew noted.

Asian and “[w]hite Democrats are more likely than [b]lack and Hispanic Democrats to say parents should not be able to opt their children out of learning about sexual orientation and gender identity,” Pew stated. In all, 53% of Asian Democrats and “six-in-ten [w]hite Democrats say this, compared with 42% of Hispanic Democrats and 34% of [b]lack Democrats.” A plurality of black Democrats say parents should be able to opt out of LGBT indoctrination (46%, compared to 34% who oppose it).

Teachers’ Unions Out of Touch with Students, Poll Shows

The views of teachers, parents, and students strongly conflict with the stance of the nation’s largest teachers’ unions, the three-million-member NEA and the 1.5-million-member AFT. The NEA provides model legislation to teach LGBT ideology in public schools and carries out numerous training sessions to promote gender ideology to teachers.

The NEA’s “Pronoun Guide” includes “Ze, Zim, Zir, Zay or Zee.” It urges teachers, “Inspire and encourage your student” with its two-page list of “LGBT+-affirming books.” It instructs teachers in 33 states how they can obtain a free “Rainbow Library” from GLSEN.

“You can use your work environment,” e.g., the classroom, “to show support for students of all backgrounds — for example, by hanging a Black Lives Matter poster or Pride flag or making clear that you will use a student’s personal gender pronouns,” the NEA advises teachers.

The union’s leadership has strongly emphasized its commitment to radical LGBTQ advocacy, regardless of parental objections or, seemingly, state law. “We will say gay! We will say trans!” bellowed NEA President Becky Pringle at the group’s 2022 Annual Meeting and Representative Assembly, taking aim at the popular “Parental Rights in Education” law, signed into law by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R), who went on to win a rousing double-digit reelection months later. The bill says teachers may not “encourage classroom discussion about sexual orientation or gender identity” before the fourth grade. The NEA stated its union members would “validate our students,” presumably when children’s gender choice conflicts with their parents’ values.

The NEA’s chief union rival, the AFT, “also coached its members on how to inject gender identity politics into the classroom,” found a report from the Defense of Freedom Institute. The AFT’s Together Educating America’s Children (TEACH) conference last July held sessions on “Affirming LGBTQIA+ Identities in and out of the Classroom” and “The TGNCNB [Transgender, Gender-Nonconforming, Nonbinary] Inclusive School and Classroom.”

Teachers in Tennessee’s Clarksville-Montgomery County School System, which strongly supported President Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election, learned that the U.S. operates as a “system of oppression” that confers “privilege status” on “white,” “able-bodied,” “men, cisgendered,” “heterosexual,” “Christian” Americans; but the U.S. allegedly brands an “oppression status” on any “person of color”; “woman, trans, nonbinary, genderqueer,” “LGBQ+, polyamorous”; and people whose religious views are “pagan.”

The LGBTQ movement’s advocacy goes outside the classroom to the restroom, locker room — even the hotel room. Last summer, teachers at Governor’s Ranch Elementary School in Littleton, Colorado, attempted to force a fifth-grade girl to share a bed with a boy who identified as a girl on an overnight field trip. Last July, the AFT adopted a resolution supporting “inclusive” policies allowing men to access female facilities, “including, but not limited to, bathrooms and locker rooms.” AFT President Randi Weingartenwalked away from a reporter who asked her about girls who do not feel safe undressing in front of boys in their locker rooms.

“Both teacher unions ignore the reality that most teachers want to teach, not affirm a student’s gender identity, either due to their personal values or their beliefs that doing so oversteps their authority and encroaches on the role of parents,” says the Defense of Freedom Institute.

AUTHOR

Ben Johnson

Ben Johnson is senior reporter and editor at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

‘No Federal Right To An Abortion’: Idaho GOP Members Lead Amicus Brief Supporting Pro-Life SCOTUS Case thumbnail

‘No Federal Right To An Abortion’: Idaho GOP Members Lead Amicus Brief Supporting Pro-Life SCOTUS Case

By The Daily Caller

Idaho Republican Sen. Jim Risch and fellow GOP Rep. Russ Fulcher filed an amicus brief Tuesday with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of defending the state’s pro-life case against the Biden administration, the Daily Caller learned first.

In a press release obtained by the Daily Caller, two leading Republicans were joined by the state’s entire delegation, along with 24 U.S. senators, and 93 U.S. representatives, to advocate for the pro-life law, the Defense of Life Act, after the Biden Administration previously attempted to override it. Prior to the GOP leaders’ move, an opening brief was filed with the U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 20 by the state’s Republican Attorney General Raúl Labrador asking the high court to intervene in a legal battle between federal officials, motivating Republican leaders to also push for the case.

“Idahoans have passed a strong law to protect the lives of mothers and the unborn, yet the Biden administration is seeking every opportunity to expand abortion. This administration cherrypicked pieces of existing statute and wrongfully reinterpreted it to fit their agenda,” Risch stated. “Their manipulation of federal law cannot usurp state law, and there is no federal right to an abortion. This amicus brief demonstrates how the administration’s substantial federal overreach is aimed at undermining pro-life protections not only in Idaho but around the nation.”

In 2020, Idaho enacted a measure that made it a felony for doctors to perform most abortions, with exceptions when “necessary to prevent the death of the pregnant woman” or within the first trimester if the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest. Following Roe v. Wade’s overturning in June 2022, the law came into effect. However, nearly two months later in August, the Justice Department sued the state over the measure.

The Biden administration claimed that the state was in violation of the Constitution and was ultimately prevented by the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA). However, the state claims that there is not only no conflict between EMTALA and Idaho’s law, but also argues that the Biden administration is attempting to “rewrite” the health act to prevent the state from enforcing the pro-life law, according to Labrador.

23-726 Amicus Brief of 121 … by hailey

EMTALA, enacted by Congress in 1986, requires hospitals with emergency departments to provide any patient with a medical examination and prohibits the departments from “refusing to examine or treat individuals with an emergency medical condition.” Notably, while there is a duty to pregnant women and the “health” of her unborn child within EMTALA, there is no mention of abortion.

While the state continued its back-and-forth legal battle with the Ninth Circuit panel, by January, SCOTUS ultimately placed a stay on two cases, Moyle v. United States and Idaho v. United States, that were impacted by the Biden administration.

“The case of Moyle v. United States and Idaho v. United States involves an elective, induced abortion which is against Idaho law,” Fulcher stated. “The Biden administration has no authority to use EMTALA to avoid holding these individuals accountable for breaking the law, and this sets a precedence that is harmful to women and children around the country.”

The GOP leaders are seeking to have the amicus brief clarify EMTALA’s correct definition, proper federal use, and the determination of no Constitutional right to an abortion based on the SCOTUS ruling within Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health. Additional supporting organizations behind the legal move are: Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America, National Right to Life, March for Life Action, Americans United for Life, Alliance Defending Freedom, Family Research Council, Catholic Vote, Concerned Women for America, Family Policy Alliance and Human Coalition Action.

“The Supreme Court has ruled it is the states’ ability to protect the right to life, yet the Biden Administration continues to exercise federal overreach to advance its abortion agenda,” state Republican Sen. Mike Crapo stated. “The Administration must stop its ongoing attacks on state-issued pro-life protections, including in Idaho.”

Arguments for the cases are set to appear before SCOTUS during their April session.

AUTHOR

HAILEY GOMEZ

General assignment reporter.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

The Cloak of Grief and Despair thumbnail

The Cloak of Grief and Despair

By Kelleigh Nelson

“There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.” — Washington Irving

“Friendship improves happiness and abates misery, by the doubling of our joy and the dividing of our grief.” — Marcus Tullius Cicero

“Tears are the silent language of grief.” — Voltaire

“The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.” —  Psalm 34:18-19


Many of us are feeling weighed down with overwhelming grief at what is transpiring, not only in our country, but worldwide, and especially with the evil of Hamas, the Houthis and Hezbollah attacking God’s people, Israel.

The loss of so many blessings and freedoms awaken us each day with a morbid fear of what will come next.  Not only is our country failing, but as we age, personal losses take a toll.

Friends my age say we lived through the best of times, and if I look back, I can say yes, many years were wonderful.  But now I find myself crying out to the Lord and weeping more often than not.

The outlook seems so dreary.  Yet I know that the Lord has His plans and no matter what, we win with Him.  Yet I feel as though I’m drowning in the loss of freedoms, of friends, of trust and in hope for the future.

Thankfully, my husband always makes me laugh or I’d be sobbing all day long because of the evil that has become so staggering.  What do people do without the Lord?  I can’t imagine.

This article shares my heart wrenching feelings for two families. I felt that if I expressed my deep sadness on paper, perhaps the Lord would lift my grief.

Sadness and Loss

When I was in my late 30s or early 40s, my sweet maternal gramma was opening a note from her cousin who was an artist.  He had sent a small colored pencil drawing and it was a lovely scene.  My gram said to me, “The worst thing about growing old is losing family and friends.”

Gramma was so right.  So many of our friends are gone, and so many have lost their spouses.  The grief is overwhelming for those left alone, and try as we might to help, no one but the Lord can ease the sorrow of losing a life partner.  I watched it with my mom and I watched it with my grandparents and many dear friends.  Call those friends for lunch, go shopping with them, send them cards or occasional flowers. Love and caring are so needed through the lonely days of heartbreaking loss.

My husband and I live in a very small community.  Down the street from us were two elderly people, Henry and Carol, who are dear friends.  Both had lost their first spouses and knew each other from church.  Maybe 10 or more years ago, they married and Carol sold her home and moved into Henry’s home.  During the Covid years, Carol came down with the virus and recovered in a week, even though in her 80s.  Her husband refused to sleep in another bedroom in case Carol needed him, and he never contracted Covid.  Our Lord is good!

When the Covid “vaccines” came out, Henry had them both get them.  A year later Carol, who had never been on a medication in her life, had a stroke while driving to pick up Henry from dialysis.  She ended up in hospital and then in rehab, and then home again.  They had to rely on church friends to be drivers for Henry as Carol was no longer allowed to drive.

Another year passed and Carol was diagnosed with congestive heart failure.  She’s now on added medications.

Recently, Henry’s two remaining children urged them to go into assisted living.  Carol did not want to do that, and didn’t want to leave their home, but ultimately this is what happened.  Henry lost his one daughter several years back and he said many times that she was the only daughter who had grown into a wonderful woman; he didn’t have much use for his son and the other daughter.  Those two seem driven by greed and both of them speak ill of their father and his second wife.

The son and daughter cleaned Henry and Carol’s house out and had an estate sale.  One of Carol’s friends would drive her to the house to see if there was anything else she wanted before it was gone, but Henry’s two children became angry with her and disallowed her to enter her own home.  The house will be sold to pay for the cost of assisted living.

Henry and Carol are not happy where they are, but the dye has been cast and now there is no turning back.  These two people are locked away and will perish in this place they detest because of their age and Henry’s children.  Neither of Henry’s children work and both could have helped with their father and his wife to allow them to remain in their home.  Carol’s sons have had to go along with this as only one son lives close and he is still employed.

How sad this makes me for them both, but especially for Carol.  We will miss them both, but especially Carol, and I know how desperate she feels.  She is no longer independent and cannot have any time for herself away from people or even Henry.  My heart breaks for them.

Cancer Diagnosis and Fenbendazole

Our neighbor next door is in his early 50s, and his wife is in her late 40s.  Both are still working and they have no children.  Joe is a smoker and every night he imbibes red wine.  Nothing wrong with that except now he has lung cancer.  His wife has always worked in medical offices, and she noticed that Joe was coughing more than normal.  She sent him for tests.

At first, he was diagnosed with pneumonia and was given medications and inhalers.  The inhalers gave him kidney infections (a side effect of the brand).  When he recovered, he was sent for further testing and over a period of six to eight months he finally received the diagnosis of lung cancer in one lung in an area that is inoperable.  Oncologists have him on 27 weeks of chemo with a port going into the lung.  He was told to stop smoking, but we still see him with cigarettes.  Radiation follows the chemo and then removal of the one lung.  His wife, Bonnie, is pleased that cancer is only in one lung.  Joe doesn’t have any extra meat on his bones, so these treatments will really be difficult.

There are some amazing results with Fenbendazole in treating cancers; it’s another anti-parasitic like Ivermectin.  In fact, ABC interviewed a man who was told that his cancer had spread.

Watch the video from ABC Network with Joe Tippens talking about being diagnosed with lung cancer, given three months to live, and then being cured with Fenbendazole and vitamins.  Six years later he is still alive.

In Dr. David Williams’ important eight-page article, A Cure for Cancer, Hidden in Plain Sight he writes about Fenbendazole.  If you have cancer, or you know anyone who has cancer, give them this article.

Dr. Williams writes about what happened to Joe Tippens.

“Two days later, Joe contacted his friend, a large animal veterinarian, who had posted a story online about a scientist working for Merck pharmaceuticals in the veterinary division. The scientist happened to be testing the effects of their existing products on mice that had various cancers. That’s when she discovered that one of their dog products (a dewormer) was 100 percent effective. This same scientist had stage 4 brain cancer and, like Joe, was also given three months to live. She started taking the dog dewormer and six weeks later, she was clear of the cancer.”

In 2002, while working at MD Anderson, Dr. Tapas Mukhopadhyay and his colleagues reported that mebendazole elicited a potent antitumor effect on human cancer cell lines both in vitro and in vivo.  It is a sister product to Fenbendazole and is typically found in deworming products for humans.

He went further in 2012 and published another study showing that fenbendazole was a potent compound for inhibiting the growth of cancer cells without doing any harm to or affecting the growth of normal cells.

Again in 2018, Dr. Mukhopadhyay published yet another study highlighting fenbendazole as a safe and inexpensive anthelmintic drug possessing “efficient antiproliferative activity” in human cancer cells. (This basically means it inhibits the growth of cancer cells.)

In that same report the doctor stated that FDA and others had published pre-clinical data on toxicology studies showing that dosages several times the approved dosages had no adverse side effects in animals.

MD Anderson isn’t the only facility that has knowledge of fenbendazole.

Dr. Williams writes, “In 2009, researchers at Johns Hopkins evaluated various drugs for treatment of glioblastoma—the most common brain cancer in adults. It is very aggressive, with the average survival 11 to 15 months, and it is considered incurable. They implanted the cancer cells into the brains of mice, which is the normal procedure in these types of studies. Before implanting the cells, however, these particular mice were treated for pinworms with fenbendazole. The brain cancer did not develop. It never grew.”

Stanford Medical Center reports that Fenbendazole is a completely safe and effective antineoplastic agent that can be repurposed for human use in treating genitourinary malignancies.

On page six, Dr. Williams gives Joe Tippens’ protocol with 222 mg. Fenbendazole daily and three other vitamin supplements.

In a recent Canada Free Press article, it included a video of a Marine who had chemo, radiation and surgery but it had not stopped his stage 4 colon cancer. He was told by his oncologist to call Hospice.  Kevin Hennings’ sister called him and told him to try Fenbendazole.  He tells the story, how he took both Fenbendazole and Ivermectin and is now cancer free.

Joe and Bonnie were given all of this information.  I don’t believe they watched any of the videos or read Dr. Williams’ article.  They said they’d stick with chemo, radiation and the removal of one lung.

I’ve laid in bed at night thinking that if only he’d start on the Fenbendazole protocol now, he may save his lung from being removed and cure himself of the cancer.  Instead, he’ll feed the cancer with the sugar in his evening wine, when he most likely could cure the disease and save his lung.

Joe Tippens is a foody and he never stopped eating whatever he wanted, yet the cancer was still destroyed.

My heart breaks because there is a possible cure for Joe, but they still trust the Medical Industrial Complex and the standard poison, burn and cut treatments for cancers.

Conclusion, Our Lord’s Love

In David’s imprecatory Psalm 56:8-9, he is crying out to the Lord.  He says, “Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou my tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?  When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back: this I know; for God is for me.”

David begins this sad psalm with the words “Be gracious to me, O God, for man tramples on me; all day long an attacker oppresses me.” The Philistines had captured David in Gath, and David was, at the time he wrote this psalm, a prisoner of war, and he had reason to cry and be sorrowful. David says that his struggles are recorded in God’s book (verse 8), and he asks God to put his tears in His bottle.

The idea behind the keeping of “tears in a bottle” is remembrance. David is expressing a deep trust in God, that God will remember his sorrow and tears and will not forget about him. He says, in the midst of this troubling time, “When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back: This I know; for God is for me.” (Psalm 56:9) and in verse 11, he states, “In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.”

The Lord remembers all the things that happen in our lives, including the suffering endured for His sake. In fact, there are many instances in Scripture of God’s recognition of man’s suffering. God is a tender-hearted Father to us, a God who feels with us and weeps with us, “And the LORD said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows.”  (Exodus 3:7)

If we believe the promises of God, we must wait upon Him, long for Him daily, listen to Him in our quiet times, look to Him for our every need, and truly live for Him throughout our lives no matter what trials come.

He hears every cry of those who belong to Him.

©2024. Kelleigh Nelson. All rights reserved.

Media Attack Florida’s Surgeon General for Defying Science but the ‘Pharmacology of Vaccines is Deceptive’ thumbnail

Media Attack Florida’s Surgeon General for Defying Science but the ‘Pharmacology of Vaccines is Deceptive’

By Dr. Richard Ruhling, MD

“The Washington Post and media in general know their bread is buttered by pharma but some sources say pharma and its industry professionals offer deceptive benefit for symptoms with adverse reaction risk.” — Dr. Richard Ruhling, MD, board-certified in Internal Medicine.


In contrast to ‘authorities’ who make a living in that industry Ruhling says people should know both sides and let parents decide what’s best for their child, as Dr. Ladapo said.

My background includes a Master’s degree in Public Health and a course in Epidemiology that most MD’s do not get.

For example, epidemiology looks as people who don’t get a disease like autism and populations that do get it—tiny babies that get so many shots. Japan waits a year and they have less. It’s not the vaccine, but the mercury that’s added to multi-dose vials as a preservative. Mercury is a neurotoxin and its symptoms can cause symptoms of autism that has become an epidemic in most of the U.S., but not in Quaker or Mennonites who don’t vaccinate.

I and my wife had a couple kids and adopted four more. None of them had any vaccinations and they all grew up healthy with one daughter featured on the cover of a health and fitness magazine.

The former editor of the New England Journal of Medicine, Marcia Angell, MD, wrote The Truth About the Drug Companies—How They Deceive UsIt’s a book title that sounds so much like the apocalyptic warning from the Bible where pharmakeia (Greek word in Rev 18:23) “deceives all nations” but it’s badly translated sorcery.

I think Florida gets negative press on this issue because of DeSantis’ stand against the covid shot, and in retrospect, evidence is mounting that supports DeSantis. In January, Cambridge University reported 25% of folks who got a shot for covid now have VAIDSVaccine Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.

This is further explained by the FDA post that media never reported—maybe Biden’$1 Billion to promote the shot was a factor, but those who got the shot have higher risk for dozens of health problems suggested by the FDA—Readers can check this out on page 16 https://www.fda.gov/media/143557/download.

©2024. Richard Ruhling, MD. All rights reserved.

How the US Regime Subsidizes Immigration—Both Legal and Illegal thumbnail

How the US Regime Subsidizes Immigration—Both Legal and Illegal

By Ryan McMaken

In recent months, stories from both the legacy media and the independent media have continued to pile up on how undocumented foreign nationals—also known as “migrants” and “illegal aliens”—are able to take advantage of a vast network of taxpayer-funded benefits in daycare, medical care, housing, and more.

For example, both the New York Post and Denver Post report that these foreign nationals have “overwhelmed” the Denver Health hospital system in Denver, and that the situation is “unsustainable.” Meanwhile, public schools report classrooms are filling up quickly with the children of these foreign nationals. Denver is hardly alone. The New York Post notes that both the City of New York and the state government have expanded local welfare programs, including pre-paid credit cards, to further ensure that migrants continue to receive cash and resources from American taxpayers. This is in addition to the approximately 66,000 foreign nationals who are housed in hotels and shelters, care of both New York and federal taxpayers. USAToday reports that colleges “across the country” are receiving millions in taxpayer money to offer housing to migrants at no charge. Chicago’s mayor is bragging he’s giving away $17 million in taxpayer-funded giveaways to “asylum seekers” who are presently living off the sweat of the taxpayers in government shelters. This, of course, is just a down payment on many more planned giveaways.

Just how much of taxpayers’ resources is going to foreign nationals? It’s difficult to estimate for a number of reasons. The spending is done through numerous different government agencies at various levels of government. Moreover, much of the money is filtered through non-profits (i.e., “NGOs”) that are labeled “charities” but are simply adjuncts of the regime.

Yet, once we add up $1 billion here and $77 million there, after a while we’re talking about real money.

Ultimately one thing becomes abundantly clear: the regime and its partners are subsidizing the influx of foreign nationals who are promised a variety of both cash and in-kind benefits. It must also be noted that, contrary to certain myths, the largesse is not reserved for only the so-called “illegal aliens.” Legal immigrants can take advantage of the generous and well-funded American welfare state even more readily than can undocumented migrants.

The exact magnitude of the effect this has on migration into the United States is unclear, but the effect of subsidization is usually the same everywhere we look: you get more of what you subsidize.  This is true of student loans, it’s true of ethanol, and it’s true of migrants. From the perspective of sound economics, we know that the government cannot possibly know the “correct” number of migrants, nor should the regime be free to centrally plan some arbitrary number. On the other hand, it is extremely unlikely that the number of migrants—even with lax border enforcement—would be as high as it is without the regime’s incessant subsidization of migrants, both legal and illegal.

How Many Foreign Nationals Live in the United States?

According to the Congressional Research Service, it is estimated there were approximately 45-46 million foreign-born residents of the United States in 2022. Of those, about 53 percent, or 24 million, are naturalized citizens. In addition to this, there are 12.9 million legal permanent residents (LPRs) and approximately 11 million more are so-called “illegal” immigrants. All combined, we find that 23 million non-citizen US residents—i.e., “foreign nationals”—are living in the United States. As we will see, many of them receive financial support and resources from US taxpayers.

(This measure does not count the approximately 3.2 million nonimmigrant workers, students, exchange visitors, diplomats, and their relatives who have sought only temporary residence in the United States. These nonimmigrant groups are not eligible for public benefits.)

Are Foreign Nationals Eligible for Welfare?

Among immigrant foreign nationals, most are eligible for some form of taxpayer-funded “public” benefits.

For example, undocumented foreign nationals may legally access “treatment under Medicaid for emergency medical conditions,” a variety of in-kind services such a soup kitchens and temporary housing, and “programs for housing or community development assistance or financial assistance administered by the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development…”

That’s just the direct federally-funded services. State and local governments may elect to provide additional services at local taxpayers’ expense.

The welfare programs available to legal foreign nationals are far more broad. Legal foreign nationals (LPRs) can access most federal welfare programs after an initial five-year period. This includes non-emergency Medicaid, CHIP, TANF (i.e., cash assistance), food stamps, and SSI.

Access to these programs has been further broadened by state governments. As noted by the National Immigration Law Center:

Over half of the states have used state funds to provide TANF, Medicaid, and/or CHIP to immigrants who are subject to the five-year bar on federally funded services, or to a broader group of immigrants. A growing number of states and counties provide health coverage to children, young adults, or pregnant persons regardless of their immigration status. Several states offer or will offer health coverage to older adults regardless of their immigration status. And five states (California, Colorado, Minnesota, Oregon, Washington) and the District of Columbia offer or will offer public or private health coverage with state subsidies to all otherwise eligible immigrants regardless of their immigration status.

It is not necessary to be employed to maintain legal permanent resident status, even if one is of working age. After all, LPRs are not the same as temporary nonimmigrant workers like H1B visa holders: “Green card holders [LPRs] can also collect unemployment compensation the same way citizens do …nor can a legal permanent resident be deported for being unemployed.”

Legal immigrants do not jeopardize their legal status by applying for additional taxpayer-funded benefits such as food stamps: “SNAP enrollment will NOT affect your ability to remain in the United States, get a green card/permanent resident status, keep your green card/permanent resident status, or become a U.S. citizen.”

In short, nearly the full gamut of taxpayer-funded welfare programs are open to legal foreign nationals after the initial five-year bar. Moreover, many migrants aren’t even held to that, including “[r]efugees, people granted asylum or withholding of deportation/removal, Cuban/Haitian entrants, certain Amerasian immigrants” and other specific groups are exempted from the waiting period.

All these foreign nationals, regardless of status, are free to send their children to government childcare centers known as “public schools.”  Because of this, state and local governments disproportionately bear the burden of supporting undocumented immigrant foreign nationals.

How Much Do Foreign Nationals Use American Social Benefits?

A variety of organizations have attempted to quantify the extent to which both naturalized immigrants and current foreign nationals use welfare programs.  This study from the National Academies concludes that the data

show[s] that the immigrant households use several programs, most notably food assistance and Medicaid, at higher rates than do households led by the native-born. …This higher use of welfare programs by immigrants is attributable to their lower average incomes and larger families.

In the NA study, immigrant households with children utilized welfare programs at higher rates in nearly every US state. In California, 61.5 percent of households utilized welfare while 40.7 percent of immigrant households did. In Texas, the same measures are at 66.3 and 44.2 percent, respectively. Similar proportions are found in Florida and New York.

This report unfortunately does not differentiate between naturalized immigrants and foreign nationals. However, given that naturalized immigrants tend to earn 50 to 70 percent more than non-citizen immigrants, it is safe to conclude that foreign nationals utilize welfare programs more than naturalized immigrants, and therefore more than the native population.

Similar studies from the Center for Immigration Studies show similar results.

  • In 2012, 51 percent of households headed by an immigrant (legal or illegal) reported that they used at least one welfare program during the year, compared to 30 percent of native households. Welfare in this study includes Medicaid and cash, food, and housing programs.
  • Immigrant households have much higher use of food programs (40 percent vs. 22 percent for natives) and Medicaid (42 percent vs. 23 percent). Immigrant use of cash programs is somewhat higher than natives (12 percent vs. 10 percent) and use of housing programs is similar to natives.

Note that these conclusions reflect immigrant households rather than immigrant individuals. This is an important distinction because many immigrant households contain citizen children who became citizens at birth due to being born in the United States. Thus, the household may contain both citizens and foreign nationals—some of whom may be illegal foreign nationals. These households, however, enjoy access to welfare programs by virtue of the underage members’ citizenship. Thus, immigrant households can access taxpayer-funded healthcare, food stamps, housing programs (and more) through native-born children.  Similar trends persist when non-citizen households are measured separately from all immigrant households combined.

Some researchers insist that welfare benefits for foreign nationals ought to be measured only on an individual, per capita basis. For example, in this report from the CATO institute, the researchers conclude that for 2020, native-born residents, on average, cost welfare programs $8,335 per capita while immigrants cost welfare programs $6,063. These proportions can vary by program. For example, the per capita Medicaid cost for immigrants is $1,859, while the cost for native-born residents is $2,081. The use of food stamps is similar ($190 per capita for immigrants versus $214 per capita for natives), Immigrants’ usage of SSI is slightly higher ($188 per capita) than it is for natives ($169 per capita)

An older CATO study (from 2013) does break out non-citizens from immigrants overall. Here, the researchers conclude that low-income immigrants use food stamps more than naturalized immigrants, and only slightly less than native-born residents. When it comes to taxpayer-funded healthcare: one in five non-citizen immigrants collect this benefit while slightly more than 1 in 4 natives collect this particular form of taxpayer largesse.

The Migration Policy Center reports that in 2021, 32 percent of immigrants (both citizen and non-citizen) used government health insurance. That’s comparable to 38 percent of natives.

Yet, even by this conservative measure of immigrant welfare usage, the best we can say is that immigrants use welfare at a rate slightly lower than that of natives. One could argue that, at the low end, immigrants receive (per capita) about 70 to 75 cents for every welfare dollar that goes to natives.  That’s not exactly “good news” given that overall federal spending on social benefits amounts to about half of the annual $6.3 trillion budget and is clearly out of control. The fact that natives get most of this is hardly an exoneration of immigrants. It’s more of an indictment of native-born Americans, millions of whom exploit their most productive fellow citizens every month to keep the government benefits flowing.

In any case, the largesse flows freely to foreign nationals also, which means immigration to the United States is heavily subsidized. We should not be surprised when a lot of immigrants show up to get their share.

*****

This article was published by the Ludwig von Mises Institute and is reproduced with permission.

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

WATCH: ‘The War On Children’ an exposé of an ongoing battle for control of the next generation and their minds. thumbnail

WATCH: ‘The War On Children’ an exposé of an ongoing battle for control of the next generation and their minds.

By Dr. Rich Swier

The War On Children website states,

Until now, only pieces of this war have been exposed but this groundbreaking documentary puts ALL of the puzzle pieces together to reveal the full battle plan being used by the left to control the future. To win this war you have to understand the tactics your enemy is using to beat you. Then it’s time to go on offense. Are you ready to be the warrior that children need or will you let the global elite control the future and turn our kids into their soldiers?

The War on Children features whistleblowers, leftists caught on camera, survivors of child mutilation, trafficking victims, corporate executives exposing the plan to sexualize children, the creator of Libs of TikTok, Senator Rand Paul, Riley Gaines, Drag Performer, Pornhub’s Sex Ed Instructor, and many more.

WATCH: The War on Children

Worth watching, especially for parents pic.twitter.com/k6gb2CMVqU

— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 18, 2024

Freedom Forever is an organization on the frontlines protecting children from ALL forms of child abuse, trafficking and exploitation. In support of The War On Children documentary, they’re giving away The Parenting Revolution digital manual, a great resource and battle plan for parents.

© Copyright 2024. The War on Children. All rights reserved.

Florida Grand Jury finds Finds Masks and Covid Lockdowns Were Harmful and Ineffective thumbnail

Florida Grand Jury finds Finds Masks and Covid Lockdowns Were Harmful and Ineffective

By Dr. Rich Swier

Florida has issued it’s 22nd Statewide Grand Jury Report, which found that masks and Covid lockdowns were both harmful and ineffective.

Preliminary findings show inefficacy of masks, lockdowns, and other nonpharmaceutical interventions.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Today, the 22nd Statewide Grand Jury released their first interim report, which includes findings on the inefficacy of masks and the years of lockdowns. On December 13, 2022, Governor DeSantis petitioned the Florida Supreme Court for a statewide grand jury to investigate crimes and wrongdoing committed against Floridians related to the COVID-19 vaccine.

The report noted roadblocks in the Statewide Grand Jury’s investigative efforts due to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Army refusing to provide representatives to testify before the jury. These entities played a substantial hand in the contracting, approval, and distribution process for the COVID-19 vaccines.

Major highlights of the report include:

  1. On nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs): “To be clear, scientific research into NPIs and their consequences did not begin with the outbreak of COVID-19. A wealth of contemporaneous scientific information already existed in major publications that could have informed a much more robust and meaningful response with respect to NPIs, but much of it was ignored or even attacked by mainstream public health and media entities in the early months of the pandemic, for reasons that are not always clear. In short, this was not an ‘information’ problem, it was a ‘judgment’ problem.”
  2. On lockdowns: “Lockdowns were not a good trade. Comparative data showed that jurisdictions that held to them tended to end up with higher overall excess mortality. This is especially evident when compared to jurisdictions that targeted their protective efforts towards the highest-risk groups instead of mandating large-scale, extended periods of quarantine for everyone.”
  3. On safety and efficacy: “It should also be apparent that establishing the ‘safety’ of a biological product necessitates a comprehensive, meaningful and accurate evaluation of the risk presented by the disease that product is designed to address.”
  4. On masking: “We have never had sound evidence of their effectiveness against SARS-CoV-2 transmission” and “there have always been legitimate questions around the impracticality of individual adherence to mask recommendations, but once it became clear that the primary transmission vector of SARS-CoV-2 was via aerosol, their potential efficacy was further diminished. Public health agencies failed to adequately explain this important distinction to the American public in favor of a broad mask recommendation that did not make nearly enough distinction between the types of masks available and put at risk those it sought to help. Well-financed federal agencies chose to fill the discourse with flawed observational and laboratory studies, hiding behind their conclusion of ‘no equipoise’ to avoid the potential embarrassment of the public health advice they championed being invalidated by evidence.”
  5. On hospitalization risk: “We know for a fact that this happened because numerous federal and state health officials have publicly stated that they did not ask or require hospitals to distinguish cases where someone was admitted with incidental SARS-CoV-2 infection versus cases where someone was so sick with symptoms of COVID-19 disease that he or she required hospitalization. Thus, it is highly likely that the CDC’s number of total hospitalizations is inflated to some degree with asymptomatic or minor SARS-CoV-2 infections that were classified as ‘hospitalizations’ in order to financially benefit the hospital.”
  6. On collateral consequences: “Somehow, because of panic, hubris, ineptitude or some unfortunate combination of the three, this widely rejected idea not only made its way back into scientific discourse in 2020, it became the law of the land in most of the United States between 2020 and 2022. It is clear to this Grand Jury that whatever benefits inured from these mandates, they were not worth the price.”

Nonetheless, the apolitical Statewide Grand Jury concluded in its first interim report that “there are still many months and much more testimony and evidence to come before our work will be finished. The issue we have been asked to examine is different from prior statewide grand juries in that it obviously affects people all over the United States—and perhaps the world—in much the same way as it affects citizens of the State of Florida.”

Governor Ron DeSantis and State Surgeon General Dr. Joseph A. Ladapo met with members of Florida’s Public Health Integrity Committee (PHIC) to discuss the First Interim Report released by the Florida Statewide 22nd Grand Jury on the harmful impacts of mask mandates and lockdowns, all pushed by the federal government.

Watch the roundtable discussion.

Governor Ron DeSantis Hosts a Roundtable Discussion Highlighting First COVID Grand Jury Report https://t.co/0zZNRc3SUs

— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) February 9, 2024

“Florida rejected the prevailing orthodoxy regarding non-pharmaceutical interventions, but in reality, just followed pre-COVID pandemic response guidance, which elite bureaucrats tossed aside as fear and hysteria took over,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “Florida preserved freedom and blocked mandates. The grand jury has now confirmed what we knew all along – Florida got it right.”

In this initial report, the grand jury noted that their investigation was hampered due to the refusal to participate by various federal agencies including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Even with this refusal from the federal government impeding a review to allow for transparency and accountability, the report’s determinations were clear:

Lockdowns and mask mandates caused more collateral damage than good. The jury identified anxiety, depression, suicidal behavior, and attention deficits were attributable to the “heavy-handed” policies of lockdowns.

Lockdowns resulted in higher excess mortality rates. The jury found that jurisdictions that implemented lockdowns tended to have higher overall excess mortality rates.

Evidence to support mask mandates were abysmal. “There is uncertainty about the effects of face masks,” the jury concluded. There has never been sound evidence of effectiveness against the virus from face masks that provided statistically significant benefits.

The CDC’s COVID-19 hospitalization data is likely inflated. The jury found that the CDC’s number of total COVID-19 hospitalizations is likely inflated due to asymptomatic or minor SARS-CoV-2 infections among patients that were classified as COVID-19 hospitalizations in order to financially benefit the hospital.

“Leading by common sense and sound science was a priority for Florida from day one of COVID-19,” said State Surgeon General Dr. Joseph A. Ladapo. “The findings of the grand jury demonstrate how going against federal mandates was the right choice for the health and freedom of all Floridians. The lasting damage done to Americans by COVID-19 mandates is no secret, but the grand jury’s first interim report makes it even more evident.”

“During the pandemic, we threw away the basic principles of public health,” said Dr. Martin Kulldorff, PhD. “The verdict is in. Lockdowns were a huge mistake.”

“CDC and other bodies ignored basic science, used their power to silence scientists that didn’t agree with them, and subverted high-quality evidence to make decisions,” said Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, MD, PhD. “In 2021, [Governor DeSantis] ordered monoclonal antibody treatment for Floridians, and the Biden administration cut the funding at a time that would have saved countless lives. Now, I don’t know for sure, but it looked to me like one political party trying to hurt members of another political party.”

“There have been some accounting tricks used to make COVID-19 seem more dangerous than it really was. There is something odd that a fundamental principle of public health was thrown under the bus,” said Dr. Bret Weinstein, PhD. “It is great to see the state of Florida acting in a capacity of international leadership. The entire planet is suffering from the exhaustion from COVID.”

“Every American knows a large number of mistakes were made. We’re not seeing a nation come together on what we did wrong,” said Dr. Joseph Fraiman, MD. “I hope the grand jury can offer our country guidance on how to organize our government and how to handle events like this in the future.”

“Spotlight needs to be shown on the federal agencies and their actions during the pandemic. That needs to come from the highest level possible, and that’s not happening,” said Dr. Steven Templeton, PhD. “I don’t think [the federal government] has an appetite right now to address these problems, and I don’t think there is going to be an appetite anytime soon for it.”

Copyright 2024. Dr. Rich Swier. All rights reserved.

Spontaneous Recovery – The Body’s Power to Heal from Cancer and Chronic Disease thumbnail

Spontaneous Recovery – The Body’s Power to Heal from Cancer and Chronic Disease

By Academy of Ideas

The following is a transcript of this video.

“Natural forces within us are the true healers of disease.”

Hippocrates

Modern medicine has achieved remarkable results. Its ability to save people from ailments which a mere generation ago would have led to an untimely death, borders on the miraculous. But when it comes to chronic illness modern medicine has its limits. Sometimes the treatment is worse than the disease. Sometimes the treatment only provides temporary relief from symptoms. Sometimes there is no treatment. Fortunately, modern medicine does not possess a monopoly on our ability to heal as the body possesses innate powers that can heal many chronic health issues. In this video we explore the body’s natural capacity to heal and look the role self-transformation plays in promoting these healing abilities.

“. . .health and illness are not random states in a particular body or body part. They are, in fact, an expression of an entire life lived. . .”

Gabor Mate, The Myth of Normal

Our body is constantly at work healing itself. White blood cells clean out wounds and combat infections, fibroblast cells create new tissue to repair ruptures to our skin and flesh, new bone cells are created to fuse fractures, and the immune system can identify and neutralize all sorts of harmful pathogens. But the body can do more than just heal from wounds, infections, fractures, and viral and bacterial illnesses, it also has the ability to heal itself from virtually all forms of chronic disease as is evidenced by the phenomenon of spontaneous recovery.

A spontaneous recovery occurs when an individual is unexpectedly cured from a disease in a way that cannot be explained through the paradigm of modern medicine. Absent any intervention by doctors, without surgery or pharmaceutical drugs, some people heal from cancer, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, Chron’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and other forms of chronic illness. For example, with regards to cancer, it is well-established that tumors can shrink in size, or even disappear absent surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation, or as was written in the medical journal Oncology Letters:

“. . .malignant tumors as well as metastases, of almost all histological types, can regress spontaneously although certain histological types regress more frequently than others.”

Sante Basso Ricci & Ugo Cerchiari, Spontaneous regression of malignant tumors: Importance of the immune system and other factors

A spontaneous recovery does not necessarily occur suddenly, or without cause, rather as Caryle Hirshberg and Marc Barasch explain in their book Remarkable Recovery:

“The original meaning of the word “spontaneous” (derived from the Latin sponte, “of free will”), has little to do with the suddenness, rapidity, or immediate change without cause which contemporary usage implies. The word, the dictionary reveals, originally had more to do with something occurring due to a “native internal proneness,” a tendency to “act by its own impulse, energy or natural law.” It implies a natural process that arises from within.”

Caryle Hirshberg & Marc Barasch, Remarkable Recovery

While only a small fraction of individuals with a chronic disease will spontaneously recover, and while most spontaneous recoveries go unreported, there are still many cases of this phenomenon documented in the medical literature. For example, in Mind Over Medicine the physician Lissa Rankin points to a case of a man suffering from pancreatic cancer, one of the most devastating forms of this disease. This man was scheduled for surgery, but had a heart attack due to a presurgical procedure which forced delay of the surgery and as Rankin writes:

“Within four weeks of his heart attack, while he was recovering from the cardiac event, the symptoms and laboratory findings of his pancreatic cancer began to resolve. Four months after the initial diagnosis, a CT scan revealed that his tumor had disappeared completely – without surgery, chemotherapy, or any other cancer treatment. Four other case studies in the medical literature report “spontaneous” remissions from inoperable pancreatic cancers.”

Lissa Rankin, Mind Over Medicine

An article titled Notes on Spontaneous Regression of Cancer examines twelve cases of spontaneous remissions and tries to understand what life changes may have led to these recoveries. One of the most remarkable cases involved a patient with a grade four brain tumour:

“Dr. Maurice Green, as an intern, observed the treatment of a physician with glioblastoma multiform [grade 4 brain tumour]. The operation was unsuccessful. The patient, however, had a regression rather than progression of symptoms… Eventually he left the hospital completely well, indicating only that he felt differently about life after facing death ….”

Charles Weinstock, Notes on spontaneous regression of cancer. Journal of the American Society of Psychosomatic Dentistry & Medicine

Examples of spontaneous recoveries are not limited to cancer; they span the spectrum of chronic diseases, from cardiovascular and autoimmune diseases to neurological disorders, blood disorders, and skin conditions. There is even the mysterious Lazarus phenomenon which is the unassisted, or spontaneous recovery, from cardiac arrest after a patient has been declared dead and all attempts at resuscitation have ended.

If the body can bring itself back from the brink of death and cure itself from diseases believed to be terminal, then its capacity for healing is far greater than most of us realize. Our goal should be to harness this power to help us heal from chronic ailments or to prevent their onset. For even if we turn to conventional medicine to treat whatever ails us, when our body is optimized to heal the efficacy of such treatments will improve.

Research into spontaneous recovery has yet to unveil a universal formula or specific set of steps to unlock the body’s vast healing potentials, as many factors influence this capacity, and individual needs vary. Those who have studied numerous cases of spontaneous recovery, however, suggest that there are recurring patterns and shared contributing factors that offer potential insights into how we can prime our body to heal.

On the one hand there are the physical factors that contribute to healing, these include changes to diet, regular exercise, improving the quality of sleep, and the breaking of addictions to drugs or alcohol. Factors related to the health of the body are crucially important to our ability to heal. But there is a psychological factor that stands above these in rank of importance, and this is the willingness to undergo a self-transformation.

Self-transformation is critical to the process of physical healing for two main reasons. Firstly, it is often only when we transform our sense of self that we develop the courage, discipline, and desire to change the physical habits that are thwarting our ability to heal. Secondly, self-transformation helps correct for the unhealthy patterns of thought, belief, and emotion, that through the body-mind connection, keep us locked in a state of sickness. Many of these thought and emotional patterns operate below the threshold of conscious awareness and are the product of our conditioning, bit it an upbring in an unhealthy environment or years of conforming to the sickness of modern society. If we free ourselves from this conditioning through self-transformation, we free ourselves from the damaging physiological responses that are dictated by our maladaptive thoughts, behaviours, and emotions.

The literature on spontaneous recovery supports the assertion that self-transformation facilitates healing, for example in the book Cured Jeffrey Rediger who examined hundreds of cases of spontaneous recoveries, writes:

“People who experienced spontaneous healings disrupted the default mode, got out of that rut, saw and experienced themselves in an entirely new way. . .”

Jeffrey Rediger, Cured

Or as Caryle Hirshberg and Marc Barasch write in Remarkable Recovery:

“. . .it has been noted by a number of researchers that extraordinary healing is often preceded by profound personal change, sometimes even what seems like a startlingly different personality.

Several researchers have noted sudden psychological turning points [or what are called] “existential shifts” preceding remarkable recovery. Dr. Marco DeVries and his associates found that a group of spontaneous remission cases they studied all showed a relatively sudden change toward increased autonomous behavior, and significantly altered attitudes toward illness, treatment, relationships, and spiritual beliefs.”

Caryle Hirshberg and Marc Barasch, Remarkable Recovery

In a paper titled “Psychological Changes Preceding Spontaneous Remission of Cancer” several researchers discovered that common among those who spontaneously healed from cancer was:

“…an increased dystonic reaction to limited aspects of the personality and an increased syntonic reaction to a wider set of characteristics than normally accessed.”

Schilder, J. N., de Vries, M. J., Goodkin, K., & Antoni, M. (2004). Psychological Changes Preceding Spontaneous Remission of Cancer. Clinical Case Studies

In layman’s terms this amounts to a rejection of the limiting aspects of one’s personality and an opening up to, and acceptance of, a greater sense of self.

As self-transformation can lead in many directions, some good and some bad, which form of it primes the body for healing? The etymology of the word heal offers a clue, as at root this word means a return to wholeness. A movement in the direction of psychological wholeness, which Carl Jung identified as the epitome of psychological health, is the form of self-transformation that promotes healing. Psychological wholeness is an ideal state which can only ever be approached, never fully attained, and it entails increased awareness of all aspects of who we are and integration of these aspects into our conscious sense of self. In volume 16 of his Collected Works, Carl Jung wrote that:

“…no previous age has ever needed wholeness so much. It is abundantly clear that this is the prime problem confronting the art of psychic healing in our day.”

Carl Jung, Collected Works Volume 16

Wholeness is attained through self-acceptance, coupled with self-knowledge, and expressed through acts of courage. Without self-acceptance we tend to deny and repress aspects of who we are, thus blocking their healthy expression. Without self-knowledge we never discover our true potential and what we value in life. Without courage we never express our potentials in the service of valued ends. Or as Mate wrote:

“When we heal, we are engaged in recovering our lost parts of self, not trying to change or “better” them. As the depth psychologist and wilderness guide Bill Plotkin told me, the core question is “not so much looking at what’s wrong, but where is the person’s wholeness not fully realized or lived out?””

Gabor Mate, The Myth of Normal

While self-transformation can enhance the healing capacities of the body, the fact remains that we are never in complete control of an illness, nor of matters of life and death. We can take all the steps necessary to heal and yet remain sick. But this does not invalidate the benefits of self-transformation as a response to illness or disease. For the pursuit of wholeness is an enriching and meaningful experience that will help us endure life no matter the health of our body. In fact, many people only wake up to their more authentic self when faced with their mortality and so amidst the great suffering that accompanies disease, a silver lining can be found. An illness or disease may be the necessary spark that inspires us to discover who we truly are and which imbues us with the courage to live in a way more aligned with our authentic sense of self.

 “It is only in the face of death that man’s self is born.”

Saint Augustine

Or as Martin Heidegger wrote:

“If I take death into my life, acknowledge it, and face it squarely, I will free myself from the anxiety of death and the pettiness of life – and only then will I be free to become myself.”

Martin Heidegger, Being and Time

EDITORS NOTE: This Academy of Ideas video is republished with permission. All rights reserved.

What Surprised Tucker Carlson Most About His Putin Interview thumbnail

What Surprised Tucker Carlson Most About His Putin Interview

By Rob Bluey

Vladimir Putin said Russia’s war with Ukraine could be “over within a few weeks” if the United States stopped supplying weapons. Until that happens, however, the Russian leader vowed to continue fighting, bluntly telling Tucker Carlson, “We haven’t achieved our aims yet.”

The war, which began in 2014 and escalated with Russia’s invasion in 2022, is currently at a stalemate despite more than $113 billion in U.S. funding and additional aid to Ukraine from its European neighbors. An estimated 500,000 people have died or been injured since 2022, according to news reports.

During the past two years of fighting, Putin acknowledged he hasn’t spoken to President Joe Biden, although the Russian leader said he would entertain peace talks today.

“Don’t you have anything better to do?” Putin asked rhetorically. “You have issues on the border, issues with migration, issues with the national debt—more than $33 trillion. You have nothing better to do, so you should fight in Ukraine. Wouldn’t it be better to negotiate with Russia? Make an agreement.”

The two-hour interview with Tucker Carlson, recorded Tuesday at the Kremlin in Moscow, was the first between the Russian leader and an American journalist since the conflict in Ukraine escalated in 2022.

In a 10-minute post-interview video shared with paid subscribers of the Tucker Carlson Network, the fabled journalist said he was annoyed that Putin began the interview by “filibustering” with a long and complex history of Russia and Ukraine. For nearly an hour, Carlson diligently listened, occasionally getting needled by Putin for interrupting with questions.

“I understand that my long speeches probably fall outside of the genre of the interview,” Putin told Carlson. “That is why I asked you at the beginning, are we going to have a serious talk or a show? You said a serious talk. So bear with me, please.”

Carlson’s Take

In his post-interview video, Carlson noted that “Putin is not someone who does a lot of interviews.” In fact, his last interview with an American journalist came in October 2021, when he spoke with CNBC’s Hadley Gamble at an energy event in Moscow.

“He’s not good at explaining himself,” Carlson observed. “He’s smart, there’s no question about that. But he’s clearly spending a lot of time in a world where he doesn’t have to explain himself.”

Carlson concluded, “He didn’t lay out his case very coherently.”

Reflecting on Putin’s answers, Carlson noted that the Russian leader became animated when discussing the United States and the West’s approach toward his country.

“He’s very wounded by the rejection of the West,” Carlson said. “The U.S. government doesn’t like Russia. And like a lot of Russians, he expected the end of the Cold War would be Russia’s invitation into Europe.”

Yet despite this tension, Carlson said it was “striking” that Putin admitted he wanted a peace deal.

“Maybe he’s lying in ways I didn’t perceive, but he kept saying it. I don’t know why he would say it if he didn’t mean it,” Carlson said.

During the interview, Putin accused former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson of scuttling previous negotiations, “saying it was better to fight Russia.”

Russia’s Aims

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 prompted worldwide condemnation, yet Putin brashly accused Ukraine of starting the war in 2014 and claimed Russia was attempting to stop it.

Asked by Carlson if Russia had achieved its aims, Putin said, “No. We haven’t achieved our aims yet because one of them is denazification. This means the prohibition of all kinds of neo-Nazi movements.”

The Russian leader then turned his ire on the United States, saving some of his harshest criticism for Biden.

“I talked to him before the special military operation,” Putin told Carlson. “And I said to him then, by the way, I will not go into details, I never do. But I said to him then, ‘I believe that you are making a huge mistake of historic proportions by supporting everything that is happening there, in Ukraine, by pushing Russia away.’”

Carlson pressed Putin on why he wouldn’t call Biden today.

“If you really want to stop fighting, you need to stop supplying weapons,” Putin replied. “It will be over within a few weeks. That’s it. And then we can agree on some terms before you do that, stop. What’s easier? Why would I call him? What should I talk to him about? Or beg him for what?”

The conversation about Ukraine dominated the two-hour interview, including a revelation that Putin suspects the CIA is responsible for the Nord Stream pipeline attack in 2022. Putin also praised his “friend” Xi Jinping of China, and boasted about the growing cooperation between the two countries.

Confrontational Questions

Near the end of the interview, Carlson confronted Putin over Russia’s detainment of Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich, who is being held on charges of espionage.

“It’s not my business, but what makes this different is the guy’s obviously not a spy. He’s a kid, and maybe he was breaking your law in some way, but he’s not a super spy and everybody knows that,” Carlson said pointedly.

Gershkovich has denied wrongdoing, although Putin suggested he broke the law by obtaining classified information. Putin indicated that continued U.S.-Russia talks would eventually lead to his release.

“I do not rule out that the person you refer to, Mr. Gershkovich, may return to his motherland,” Putin said. “But at the end of the day, it does not make any sense to keep him in prison in Russia.”

Reflecting on the interview from his hotel room afterward, Carlson refuted critics who have attacked him for giving Putin a platform.

“I’m from La Jolla, California, I’m not flacking for Putin,” Carlson said. “Please.”

*****

This article was published by the Daily Signal and is reproduced with permission.

Image Credit: YouTube screen shot Tucker Carlson Network

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How We Got A Lot Richer thumbnail

How We Got A Lot Richer

By Bruce Bialosky

Editors’ Note: We agree with much of the foregoing analysis. We would add that transfer payments for COVID relief, or any other purpose,  financed with debt, is simply wealth borrowed from future generations for the benefit of the present generation. We made ourselves richer and our grandkids poorer. Is that a moral way to get rich? If not “wealth” by borrowing, there is “wealth” by money printing. Inflationary monetary expansion simply increases the claims that can be made on existing wealth and is not the real production of future goods or services. If that were not true, Zimbabwe would be the economic powerhouse of the world.  All nations could simply print themselves into prosperity. In fact, by creating more monetary claims faster than real goods can be produced, we made prices go up. That makes our brokerage accounts and our houses go up. Those with appreciating assets did OK, but those living from paycheck to paycheck, renting, or borrowing on credit cards to stay afloat, got killed by the twin billing of inflationary cost increases and higher costs to borrow. Those without appreciating assets are getting clobbered. So, we are getting richer by exploiting the poor and impoverishing our grandkids. This is a redistribution of wealth from the most vulnerable, not the production of wealth. It is a lousy way to get richer.

The Wall Street Journal ran a column on December 4th entitled “Who Got a Lot Richer During the Pandemic,” https://www.wsj.com/personal-finance/savings/who-got-a-lot-richer-and-who-didnt-during-the-pandemic-8dd238ab. I read it with great interest and found a gaping hole in the analysis.

The column starts by telling us the pandemic made Americans richer which many might think counterintuitive to reality. After all, 2020 saw many businesses shut down for extended periods at the beginning of the pandemic. Depending on the state in which you live, the period many businesses were shut down was extensive.

I am sure that you saw the permanent closure of retail businesses and restaurants in your local community. Big businesses were allowed to operate, but smaller retailers were closed along with many service businesses.

The column cites that home values went up during the period. People had fewer opportunities to spend money in the absence of concerts, shows or amusement parks; less eating out; travel, etc.; so, they paid down debt or socked money into a savings account. On the other hand, with the reduction in commerce, the overall income of many people went down.

Apparently, the median household net worth went up 30% during the period. It almost makes you want to yearn for another pandemic.

The column barely touches on the real reason for the financial improvement. That was government handouts. Otherwise, while the citizens of the United States were getting wealthier, the government was getting ever so much deeper in debt.

First, let’s look at one of their assertions. The price of housing would have only gone up for one of two reasons: 1) There was greater cost for replacement housing because of the cost of raw materials and/or labor, or 2) There was greater demand. There certainly was greater demand in certain parts of the country as people used this crisis to reevaluate their lives, particularly in states that had heavy-handed pandemic rules. We all know the states that lost population and the ones that gained new residents which drove up the cost of housing in those states. The only reason the price of housing might not have gone down in the states that lost population is because of government regulation which drove people out in the first place.

Second, the savings that people had from not spending money. During ordinary times people do not save a high enough percentage of their income for two main purposes. First, retirement savings. Second, a cash cushion for emergencies or extraordinary expenses like medical, home repair, or car repairs. If people were putting more money aside for those two reasons and paying down credit card debt that is excellent news. How did that occur? Were people really saving more money from their earnings? Were they cutting down on their expenses and being more responsible? Not really. The major source of how they improved their net worth was through transfer payments – all those “emergency” funding programs.

Proof of this is the significant increase in credit card debt accompanied by delinquencies on that debt. Americans did not become more responsible about their spending habits.

Full disclosure, we did not personally participate in any of these programs, and any money sent to us was immediately donated to PragerU.

The program that has received the most attention is one relieving college loans that the Biden team keeps trying to stuff down everyone’s throat – even those who never went to college. It is nearly impossible to figure out how much has been taken off the debt rolls for individual households. The best figure I could find was $770 billion. A transfer from those with the debt to the rest of us (the American people) is how this was done.

Then there are the various other programs: The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), enhanced unemployment benefit programs, and the Employment Retention Credit (ERC). These programs made some sense when the pandemic started and businesses were forced to be closed, but they dragged on and on and on. The ERC program is still funding money. Transfers were made to businesses and individuals, reducing their debt and increasing their net worth, while our governments — particularly the fed — went deeper into debt.

The WSJ column then breaks down the wealth by race, which is seemingly mandatory today even though no one asked. Of course, those with “white privilege” made off the best. Check that, it is Asians who have the highest average net worth of any group in America. So much for our racist economy.

Since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020, the national debt has increased by about $8 trillion. It is good that individuals’ net worth went up an estimated 30% during that period, but did it really when it was largely due to government transfers? We need to be accurate.

*****

This article was published by Flash Report and is reproduced with permission granted by the author.

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Social Insecurity: It’s Not Wrong to be Concerned about Facts

By Karl Streitel

A December 19, 2023, article by Brett Arends on MarketWatch caught my eye with the oh-so-clickable title of “This Is the Scariest Number for Social Security.” Given the fact that many corporate media articles today focus on pointing out to the Rubes how their senses are wrong and, gosh golly, everything is just peachy, it did not shock me to learn that Mr. Arends was not referring to the program’s unfunded liabilities or the projected depletion of the trust fund. No, Mr. Arends contends that the real problem is the dragooned citizens who foolishly worry about Social Security’s solvency—and the “quiet effort” to rabble-rouse:

The scariest number may be 71%. That astonishing figure, from a new poll, is how many have been persuaded that cuts to Social Security—potentially deep cuts—are either likely or inevitable. And that wasn’t from a biased poll conducted by a pressure group. Or a fly-by-night poll by a startup. It came from a comprehensive survey of 10,000 people conducted by the Harris Poll on behalf of the respected Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies. . . .

Score another victory for the Resistance Is Futile campaign—the quiet effort to persuade Americans to accept cuts to Social Security that they don’t want and that the program doesn’t need.

If our national-pension poachers get their way, it will be because of this.

Mr. Arends then argues that “none of this is remotely needed. It’s pure spin.” His evidence? America is richer than ever, “billionaire boondoggles” can be eliminated in the tax code, and the valiant Internal Revenue Service (IRS) can catch more tax “cheats” to the tune of an estimated $700 billion per year.

However, Mr. Arends’s arguments here do not prove that Americans are foolish to worry about Social Security’s health and whether cuts are likely. Let’s say I’m out walking and see a car careening toward me. Initially, I worry for my life but then remember that the driver has all sorts of possible options for not killing me; thus, it’s silly for me to continue to worry because obviously one of those options will come to pass, right?

Reality Bites

However, in reality, the Social Security program is facing substantial problems, and these problems are mounting each year. To wit, the non-fly-by-night-startup 2023 Annual Report of the Board of Trustees of the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance and Federal Disability Insurance Trust Funds (more commonly referred to as Social Security and disability insurance) discusses the current path of fund depletion and potential benefit reductions: “Under the Trustees’ intermediate assumptions, OASDI cost is projected to exceed total income in 2023, and the dollar level of the hypothetical combined trust fund reserves declines until reserves become depleted in 2034, one year earlier than projected in last year’s report” (emphasis added).

The report then mentions what would be needed to keep the fund solvent over the next seventy-five years:

(1) Revenue would have to increase by an amount equivalent to an immediate and permanent payroll tax rate increase of 3.44 percentage points to 15.84 percent beginning in January 2023; (2) scheduled benefits would have to be reduced by an amount equivalent to an immediate and permanent reduction of 21.3 percent applied to all current and future beneficiaries effective in January 2023, or 25.4 percent if the reductions were applied only to those who become initially eligible for benefits in 2023 or later; or (3) some combination of these approaches would have to be adopted. (emphasis added)

Thus, not only is the trust fund expected to be depleted in 2034—at which point benefits would need to be reduced if no changes are made to the program in the interim—but also that this date is earlier than expected last year. Further, the report notes that the total projected unfunded liability over the next seventy-five years had also increased since last year’s projection—not exactly rosy pictures for current and future beneficiaries.

This is not speculation based on hoping for future changes; this is a fact-based projection founded on current reality and assuming no changes to the program—which is a fiscally prudent approach to projections. If I see that my income will pay for only 80 percent of my lifestyle in ten years but then wave that issue away by saying that I’ll make some changes before that happens, I doubt anyone would think my “planning” is particularly sensible (especially if I have a history of not making any such changes despite similar projections).

It thus seems odd to me that Mr. Arends wants to paint those concerned about Social Security’s solvency as somehow manipulated by the “quiet effort” of people hell-bent on taking away Social Security when the current facts indicate those concerned people are exactly right—their benefits are scheduled to be reduced in 2034, barring any changes. Even the Social Security Administration says so. You may argue that it is obvious that solutions exist to improve the program’s fiscal health before that date, but then you are engaging in “spin” and assuming future actions that may or may not come to pass. The people polled, however, seem to have fears backed by the current state of facts, which does not seem unreasonable at all to me.

The True Manipulation

At the end of the article, Mr. Arends concludes that “the battle lines are drawn: Make the political donor class pay taxes, or steal pensions from middle-class retirees,” but this statement itself epitomizes manipulative, fact-free language.

For one, the “political donor class”—by which Mr. Arends means billionaires—certainly pays taxes. According to the ProPublica investigation into the leaked IRS records from 2014 to 2018, the top four hundred income earners (those earning over $110 million per year) paid an effective tax rate of 22 percent while the top twenty-five richest Americans paid “a total of $13.6 billion in federal income taxes” (or $2.72 billion per year).

Given that the projected deficit in Social Security over the next ten years is $2.572 trillion, even if we expropriated one hundred times more in taxes from the twenty-five richest Americans over those years, we would only just barely cover that projected deficit—which is also increasing in magnitude each year.

The article also explains that the main reason those in the top four hundred paid an effective rate lower than the highest marginal tax rate (37 percent) was that much of their income came from investments—which are taxed at a maximum of 20 percent for long-term gains and qualified dividends—and that they took large deductions, often for charitable contributions. Both of these reasons are legal and do not amount to not paying taxes any more than most people who take deductions for paid real estate taxes or for children or for business mileage amounts.

We can certainly argue over the tax rates and deductions (although I fail to see how donating to charity is a loathsome idea), but claiming that we need to make billionaires “pay taxes” ignores reality once again.

Furthermore, the idea that reducing Social Security benefits amounts to “steal[ing] pensions from middle-class retirees” is also a fiction. For one, no one is stealing anything from retirees if benefits are reduced. This is because Social Security benefits are not a contractual obligation or a “right.” According to the Supreme Court in Fleming v. Nestor in 1960:

To engraft upon the Social Security system a concept of “accrued property rights” would deprive it of the flexibility and boldness in adjustment to ever-changing conditions which it demands. . . . It is apparent that the non‐​contractual interest of an employee covered by the [Social Security] Act cannot be soundly analogized to that of the holder of an annuity, whose right to benefits is bottomed on his contractual premium payments. (emphasis added)

Thus, Social Security benefits are always allotted and paid according to the caprices of Congresspeople, who can change the system at any time and in any way they like (or can get away with). We may feel like we are “owed” benefits, but, again, reality disagrees.

Social Security benefits are also paid mainly via payroll taxes levied on current workers, so if there is any theft going on, it is actually from current workers and by current beneficiaries (via politicians). One common myth about the program is that “you’re owed” what you paid in, as if that money goes into a personal account for you. Quite the opposite: the money paid into the program is spent on current beneficiaries, which means that when current workers eventually take Social Security, they will be taking money coercively from their own children and grandchildren to support themselves. In truth, Social Security—like all taxpayer-funded benefits programs—digs itself a deeper hole each year, and the only true solution is to phase out the program entirely and allow people to be responsible for their own retirements instead of being subject to the whims of Congress or the confiscatory ideas of Mr. Arends.

*****

This article was published by the Ludwig von Mises Institute and is reproduced with permission.

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Will We Ever Get the Truth? [The Covid Crisis and Lies] thumbnail

Will We Ever Get the Truth? [The Covid Crisis and Lies]

By Jeffrey Tucker

Editors’ Note: We agree that it certainly looks like Mr. Trump will be the Republican nominee. It would be very helpful to avoid similar abuse again (likely coming from another pandemic or for reasons of environmental extremism). Mr. Trump publicly should say he was wrong, and today sorry, for the COVID-19 abuse that began under his administration. Everything said about the vaccine(you won’t get Covid and you can’t spread it) was wrong. The six-foot rule was made up. The lockdown did not stop the spread and wrecked the economy. Drug companies were taken off the hook. The government has lied repeatedly about the side effects of the vaccine. Yes, Mike Pence was “in charge”, but he was selected by Trump. Yes, the press bullied the Administration with their worship of Dr. Fauci. Yes, in the early days, there was much confusion. However, The Prickly Pear never bought into any of this and supported the Great Barrington Declaration. But, Donald Trump was in charge and he is a tough man. His instincts for “two weeks to bend the curve” initially were correct. But then, he got rolled by the bureaucracy. He needs to answer for these abuses and use the opportunity to inoculate the public against abuses like we saw, so they never happen again. He can use this as a teachable moment about how the deep state and the media worked hand in hand to create an authoritarian panic.

Donald Trump will certainly get the Republican nomination. With that the issue of truth and honesty about what happened on March 13, 2020, and beyond will likely not be pushed by the executive branch even if Trump wins.

No one in his circles wants any talk of this subject, even if every bit of the current national crisis (health, economics, cultural, societal) traces to those grim days of lockdown and the ensuing disaster. We are very far from gaining anything like transparency on what precisely happened.

The situation today is quite the opposite. Again, Trump’s team long ago accepted a tacit agreement to make the issue go away. This was initially in the interest of securing the nomination (never admit error to your voters). But it soon became an accepted doctrine in those circles. Trump’s opponent wants it this way too, of course, except perhaps to say that Trump didn’t lock down enough soon enough.

Meanwhile, the World Health Organization has announced every intention to use the last experience as a template for the next. The national media has no regrets about pushing wild panic. The tech companies show no remorse for unrelenting censorship which still continues to this day. Pharma has more power than ever, and so do the armies of bureaucratic enforcers at all levels of government. Academia is out too: here administrators closed their campuses and forced pointless shots on returning students. They are all culpable.

Let’s take a step back and ask a fundamental question: when will truth emerge to the point that your average intellectual in a public space will admit that this whole thing was catastrophic for everything we call civilization? We know the answer involves time but how much time? And how much in the way of effort will it require to get the reckoning we need before the healing we require takes place?

This morning my mind drifted back to the days after 9/11, when the George Bush administration decided to use the public fury over the attacks in New York and Washington to deploy a war that the president’s father began much earlier but did not complete. The Bush administration decided on regime change in Iraq and Afghanistan.

A small minority of people (myself among them) objected that these wars would do nothing to realize justice for 9/11. Indeed they would cause calamity at home and abroad. Americans would lose liberty, and security, and many lives would be lost. Overthrowing Saddam and the Taliban without a viable replacement for each would unleash some unpredictable chaos. Nationalizing security at home would create a bureaucratic monster at home that would be eventually turned on Americans themselves. 

How well we recall the way we dissidents were shouted down, called every name. The most absurd was “coward,” as if our opinions on this grave matter were formed by nothing other than our unwillingness to type cheers as others fought and died.

Sure enough, all our predictions (which were not hard to make) came true. The US wrecked what was the most liberal and secular country in the region, while the war against the Taliban ended with them taking charge again. At some point, the US even facilitated the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi of Libya, for whatever reason. No one could have anticipated a massive refugee crisis in Europe that would destabilize every government and give rise to massive public anger and distrust.

Some seven years after these invasions, candidate Ron Paul was on the stage at a Republican debate and denounced the whole thing. He was booed. And then smeared. And then shouted down and hated. But that seemed to kick off a rethinking.

Eight years after that, Donald Trump said something similar and his comments elicited the same reaction. Except that he then won the nomination. That was 2016. Since then there seems to have been a gradual dying out of the warhawks who take pride in their wild adventure.

Just this morning, writing in the New York Times, Ross Douthat tossed off the following paragraph without much of a thought, even burying it in an otherwise uneventful column.

The Iraq war and the slower, longer failure in Afghanistan didn’t just begin the unraveling of the Pax Americana. They also discredited the American establishment at home, shattering the center-right and undermining the center-left, dissolving confidence in politicians, bureaucracies and even the military itself, while the war’s social effects lingered in the opioid epidemic and the mental health crisis.

You see how he writes this as if it is nothing controversial? He is merely relaying what everyone knows today. Somewhere between 2001 and 2024, unthinkable thoughts became conventional wisdom. There was never an announcement, never a serious commission, never an apology or some kind of big reckoning or admission of error. What was once radical became mainstream, gradually and then all at once. It’s not even clear when this happened. Eight years ago? A year ago? It’s not clear.

Regardless, nearly a quarter of a century later, it’s now conventional wisdom that the most popular war policy in the US at the time was a catastrophe by every measure. Everyone today knows for sure that the whole thing was backed by deliberate lies. 

Not that anyone involved will ever be held accountable. George Bush himself is still riding high and has never been forced to recant his views or actions. None of the top players have paid any price at all. They all moved on to greater fame and riches than before.

Now everyone just quietly says it was a bad idea all along.

What can we learn from this? Certainly, we can take away that the Covid experience that precipitated the greatest crisis since the Civil War will take a very long time to deal with in any honest way. Will it take 25 years? I seriously doubt it. The work of so many dissidents like those who write daily for Brownstone have dramatically sped up this timeline and contributed to making a repeat much more difficult.

And maybe that is what we can hope for. And maybe that is much better than the record of history would hope for. Consider the disaster called the Bolshevik Revolution. The event was actually extremely popular in US intellectual circles at the time. Most “liberals” heartily approved of it, believing all the reports that were available at the time. It took years before they began to rethink.

After the reports of the initial starvations and Lenin’s shift away from War Communism, there was a Red Scare in the US that warned of Bolshevism coming to the US. Hardly anyone really wanted it here. However the party in power in the new Soviet Union would not and could not admit any error. Fully 70 years went by before there was fundamental regime change in that case. That seems like a long time but consider this. The people who experienced the revolution as young men had become very old men by 1989 and many of them died.

Enough of them eventually died to make the stakes for truth-telling low enough to make it possible. And yet even then, and today, the problem of the past is widely considered to be the crimes of Stalin, not Bolshevism itself. Sure, there is some nostalgia for the Czar but it is not serious.

If you think about it, then, Bolshevism lasted one lifetime and then died out. That’s a pretty short lifespan for a fanatical ideology in one country. Maybe that’s about what we should expect, and why? Because any generation involved in revolutionary destruction is woefully unwilling to admit error, because they are invested and also because they fear reprisals.

So it is for the vast Covid generation, especially two groups: the public-health bureaucrats plus media and tech titans that cheered it, and also for the vast swarms of young people who threw themselves into the disaster as a means by which they would and could experience something meaningful in their otherwise aimless lives.

Will we have to wait for all of them to die out before times change? Will we have to wait 70 years until 2100?

Surely not. Public and intellectual pressure does speed up the timeline. And in this case, we have an interesting sociological development, as Bret Weinstein has pointed out. The censorship and cancellation campaign hit the wrong groups. These people are now seriously motivated to make a difference. They will not let this pass into the history books. They have a passion for truth and a fiery demand for justice. It was for them the trauma of a lifetime and it will not be forgotten.

Picture a pot boiling with a tight lid. It is being held on by ruling-class elites in pharma, tech, and media, along with myriad government agents who don’t want to be found out. But the fire is still burning and the water is boiling. Something will give, and it could be sooner rather than later. What we will discover once it all comes out is awesome to consider. If we have only a fraction of the truth now, the full truth will be mind-blowing.

We cannot wait a lifetime. The fire must still burn.

*****

This article was published by the Brownstone Institute and is reproduced with permission.

Image Credit: YouTube screenshopt CBS News

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Oral Arguments begin February 7th, 2024 before the Florida Supreme Court on Proposed Amendment that Codifies Unrestricted Abortion thumbnail

Oral Arguments begin February 7th, 2024 before the Florida Supreme Court on Proposed Amendment that Codifies Unrestricted Abortion

By Dr. Rich Swier

Liberty Counsel Founder and Chairman Mat Staver will be presenting oral arguments before the Florida Supreme Court on Wednesday, February 7, 2024, beginning at 9:00 a.m. EST, regarding a proposed amendment that would codify unrestricted abortion as a right in the state constitution.

Liberty Counsel represents Florida Voters Against Extremism which is urging the Florida Supreme Court not to approve the wording of a proposed amendment that is misleading and deceptive and violates the single subject rule.

The proposed amendment, “Amendment to Limit Government Interference with Abortion,” would create a new section in the Florida Constitution “limiting government interference with abortion.” The full text of the accompanying ballot summary states: “No law shall prohibit, penalize, delay, or restrict abortion before viability or when necessary to protect the patient’s health, as determined by the patient’s healthcare provider. This amendment does not change the Legislature’s constitutional authority to require notification to a parent or guardian before a minor has an abortion.”

The proposed amendment is sponsored by Floridians Protecting Freedom, Inc., a political committee supported by the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood Affiliates, the American Civil Liberties Union, and other groups that support unrestricted abortion on demand up to birth.

The effect of the proposed amendment would prevent the State of Florida from regulating all abortions that a vague and undefined “healthcare provider” may deem “necessary” to protect the woman’s “health.” The amendment leaves the terms “necessary” and “health” purposefully undefined and vague. The proposed amendment would permit Partial-Birth Abortion, which is banned by the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act. This conflict alone with the federal law disqualifies the proposed amendment. The proposed amendment also violates the Florida Constitution’s single-subject requirement by addressing multiple subjects, including pre-viability abortions and health in the same proposal. Those are distinct issues that cannot permissibly be put into a single ballot initiative.

According to the Florida Department of Health, a “healthcare practitioner” includes nearly 60 categories — everything from a massage therapist, audiologist, 911 public safety telecommunicator, and a tattoo artist. According to this proposed amendment, any of those professions could refer a woman for an abortion.


Please text or call Jack Kinnett, Vice President of Constituency Affairs for the Liberty Counsel @ 407.702.7478 or email Jack@LC.org for information if you are interested in attending or want additional info.


Hear Live Argument Here:

Oral Argument Broadcasts & Ceremonial Sessions

Liberty Counsel’s Briefs:

FL Voters Against Extremism PC (PDF)

Brief FL Voters Against Extremism – Filed (PDF)

Press Releases:

FL Supreme Court Will Hear Abortion Initiative Argument

Deceptive Abortion Initiative in Florida Must Be Rejected

FL Supreme Court Asked To Reject Deceptive and Misleading Abortion Amendment

Media:

(AUDIO) The Florida Supreme Court Will Hear Oral Arguments Regarding This Deceptive Amendment

(AUDIO) Florida Supreme Court Will Hear Abortion Initiative Argument

(AUDIO) Florida Supreme Court Must Reject Misleading Abortion Amendment

©2024. Dr. Rich Swier. All rights reserved.

Prosecution of Pro-Lifers Continues under Biden’s DOJ, with 6 More Convictions thumbnail

Prosecution of Pro-Lifers Continues under Biden’s DOJ, with 6 More Convictions

By Family Research Council

On Tuesday, a guilty verdict was announced for six pro-life activists for violating the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act at an abortion facility near Nashville, Tenn. The Biden administration’s Justice Department brought the charges, which stemmed from a peaceful protest on March 5, 2021, in which a group of pro-lifers prayed and sang hymns at the entrance to the Carafem Health Center Clinic.

Video of the protest shows a group of approximately 20-30 pro-life activists peacefully praying and singing hymns while standing and sitting along the walls of a hallway leading to the door of the abortion facility, with a small segment of the group sitting directly in front of the facility’s entrance. Roughly two hours into the vigil, a number of protestors were arrested for blocking the entrance without incident.

In October 2022, the Biden administration’s Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that it was charging 11 individuals involved in the protest with violating the federal FACE Act, which bars individuals from physically blocking the entrance to an abortion facility. Six of the defendants were eventually convicted on Tuesday, with each facing “up to a maximum of 10 and a half years in prison, three years of supervised release and fines of up to $260,000,” with sentencing set for July 2. Four other defendants are scheduled to stand trial for misdemeanor violations of the FACE Act.

The Thomas More Society, which is representing the defendants, is expected to appeal the convictions.

The DOJ’s FACE Act prosecutions are the latest in a series of legal actions directed at pro-life activists under the Biden administration, in which at least 24 cases have been prosecuted since January 2021. At the same time, there have only been four FACE Act indictments of pro-abortion individuals related to a single attack on a pregnancy resource center in Florida, despite the fact that there have been hundreds of attacks that have occurred against churches and pregnancy resource centers during Biden’s tenure.

As noted by Family Research Council’s Arielle Del Turco during a House Judiciary Committee hearing last year, the FACE Act was originally designed to protect abortion facilities, pregnancy resource centers, and places of worship. The types of attacks committed against churches have included “vandalism, arson, bomb threats, gun-related incidents, and interruption of worship services — all of which are punishable under the FACE Act,” she emphasized.

The disparity in prosecutions has led to Congress taking notice. In October, Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Rep. Chip Roy (R-Texas) introduced a bill to repeal the FACE Act, citing the biased enforcement that is being carried out by the Biden administration. “We need to repeal it and then stop giving authority to the Department of Justice to be able to go after [pro-life] people,” he told Tony Perkins in September.

In comments to The Washington Stand, Mary Szoch, director of the Center for Human Dignity at Family Research Council, questioned the priorities of the Biden administration’s DOJ in targeting pro-lifers amid a spiraling border crisis and the spreading conflict in the Middle East.

“As countless little boys and girls are being trafficked across the border and wars wage across the world, the Biden administration thinks the most important thing to focus on is prosecuting peaceful protestors attempting to save unborn babies from a brutal death,” she pointed out. “Yes, these protestors violated the FACE Act, but the Biden administration should consider spending taxpayer dollars to protect America’s border — not to stop non-violent men and women who are simply singing hymns while defending the unborn.”

AUTHOR

Dan Hart

Dan Hart is senior editor at The Washington Stand.

RELATED ARTICLE: Report Catalogues Dozens of New Incidents of Persecution against Christians in the West

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

American mutation: The pitfalls of plummeting population thumbnail

American mutation: The pitfalls of plummeting population

By MercatorNet – Navigating Modern Complexities

A groundbreaking study out of Chicago has confirmed a troubling trend that is changing America: the depopulation of our cities.

This leading-edge analysis, Depopulation and associated challenges for US cities by 2100, was a team effort from the University of Illinois Chicago. Their shocking conclusion? Half of America’s 30,000 cities will have population decline this century.

The study’s rigorous scholarship is no less monumental than its findings. Over 24,000 American cities were examined to document that de-urbanisation is no longer an aberration, but the new normal with no end in sight. Consider: urbanisation was prevalent for most of American history. As the economy grew, people left the country and headed for cities where prosperity beckoned. All was well while it lasted.

Those days are over. The Idea of Progress, the secular faith in a country weaned on individualism and unlimited frontiers, is sputtering to an end. As yours truly posited in these pages last year:

The Idea of Progress, the belief that history ineluctably proceeds towards material well-being and a better life, took hold and superseded religious faith. This belief emerged from Enlightenment empiricism. Mankind had come to believe in itself: Master of the Universe. Modernism was born.

The UI Chicago researchers have unwittingly revealed that Modernism is retrogression. “Modern” has done a 180, and the mantra of perpetual growth wanes. Remember that old Chinese curse about living in interesting times?

Fascinating findings

The UI Chicago disquisition elicited a priceless Fox News clickbait header: “Thousands of US cities are predicted to become ghost towns by 2100: New study.” While things are not that dire, urban America’s decline is underway.

That is problematic. Urban infrastructure has been designed and built to accommodate existing populations as well as anticipated growth. Water systems and electrical grids are expensive to maintain; a declining tax base will lead to reduced services:

Given the current challenges with aging infrastructure in the United States, this reduced financial capacity will probably lead to a lower level of service and even cascade to create unaffordable services. For example, repaving some roads and providing some transit services may become prohibitively expensive… and electric and water utilities may have to raise their rates given the reduced revenue from depopulation, which can create affordability issues that disproportionately impact vulnerable populations.

Below replacement fertility, urban blight and tight money signal the mutation of America’s optimistic “progress” zeitgeist to something less rosy.

The impact on suburban and peri-urban (transitioning from rural to urban) areas is pronounced. Population increases there drain residents from the core cities. As a result, the remaining/left-behind urban core is disproportionately poor. Those are the “vulnerable populations” referenced in the study.

Places like Cleveland, Detroit, Birmingham, Memphis and St. Louis are prime examples. Flint, Michigan and Jackson, Mississippi received national attention for their deteriorating water services. While many factors are involved, urban out-migration and shrinking tax bases have set the stage for manifold problems.

Street and road maintenance will be “economised”. Prioritising maintenance and upgrades will be contentious. Reduced public transportation will affect those who need it most. Public water/sewer, waste disposal and electrical systems will curtail services.

Affordable housing will be another casualty as underutilised infrastructure is decommissioned. That happened in Detroit when the middle class decamped for the suburbs. Entire city blocks were condemned, residents relocated, services cut and fenced off. The Visitors and Convention Bureau does not publicise such things.

America has its slowest population growth ever, though illegal alien numbers are elusive. Reliance on immigration has been the easy way to find cheap labour and prop up urban population. That’s not working anymore. Per the study:

  • Asian and Hispanic immigrants now favour smaller communities outside big cities.
  • Urban depopulation is most severe in the Northeast and Midwest. Out West, southern California is the region most affected.
  • Urban depopulation is coming to the Rocky Mountain states, long considered a refuge from frenzied California and the Northeast.

How to address this?

What is certain is that an important cultural shift in planning and engineering communities is needed, away from conventional, growth-based planning, to accommodate a dramatic demographic shift. [Emphasis added]

Note “dramatic demographic shift”. Any way you slice it, we’re talking about the decline of urban America.

How it started

Following the Martin Luther King assassination (1968), cities burned. Turmoil engulfed inner-city ghettoes. Racial tensions flared. White flight ensued, where folks voted with their feet to the suburbs.

What happened? LBJ’s Great Society, a colossal fiasco with its “War on Poverty”. This vastly expanded social welfare bureaucracy, giving rise to illogical relief schemes. One such program mandated higher assistance payments if there was no adult male (potential breadwinner) in the household. Talk about undermining the family. Why work when you could get by otherwise?

Then came food stamps, a second currency undermining the dollar. The welfare class metastasised. That, along with the swelling cadre of social services workers, boosted the client base of the Democratic Party.

PC penetrated law enforcement. Rather than uphold “law and order” (which itself became a code word for racism), authorities ceded the streets and advised people to just avoid certain areas.

Mass immigration depressed wages. Attendant congestion further diminished the appeal of urban living. Drug abuse skyrocketed, savaging families.

Birthrates plunged to below-replacement level, reflecting changing priorities, wokeism and ever-tightening finances. Urban living is no longer worth it for so many upwardly mobile types.

Then came the crippling triple whammy: Covid lockdowns shut down communities, wrecked the economy and sewed fear and division. Remote work became an option. There is no going back.

How others see us

An old friend is a veteran China Hand – sinologist, linguist, and analyst rolled into one. Smart guy. He says some Chinese scholars are fascinated with America’s decline. They say stuff like, “Don’t your leaders see this?” “Why won’t they do something?” “Can’t you even control your borders?”

Like Ancient Rome, America lost the republic and became an empire. Globalism rules. Whenever that happens, the sense of national identity, thus national pride, fades. What it even means to be an American is up for debate. Mammonism, demoralisation and anomie set in, and the rest is history.

It is not surprising that America’s cities are being depopulated. What goes around comes around.

AUTHOR

LOUIS T. MARCH

Louis T. March has a background in government, business, and philanthropy. A former talk show host, author, and public speaker, he is a dedicated student of history and genealogy. Louis lives with his family in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.

RELATED ARTICLE: America’s elites are living in a bubble — and here’s the data to prove it

EDITORS NOTE: This Mercator column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Top Peer Reviewed Study Calls for Global Ban on Covid Shots thumbnail

Top Peer Reviewed Study Calls for Global Ban on Covid Shots

By The Geller Report

“Given the extensive, well-documented SAEs and unacceptably high harm-to-reward ratio, we urge governments to endorse a global moratorium on the modified mRNA products…”Cureus, Journal of Medical Science.


No media. No mea culpa. They are on a death march.

Think of all those poor souls who lost their jobs, their college placements, their livelihoods for having the temerity to think.

Cureus, Journal of Medical Science, is a web-based peer-reviewed open access general medical journal using prepublication peer review.

Top Study Calls for Global Ban on Covid Shots

By: Frank Bergman, Slay News, January 26, 2024:

A group of world-renowned researchers has published a groundbreaking new study on soaring sudden death rates and called on governments to ban Covid mRNA shots globally.

In a peer-reviewed paper published on Wednesday, researchers re-analyzed the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine phase 3 trial data.

However, the researchers uncovered evidence of far more serious adverse events among those in the vaccine group.

This is not what published reports from Pfizer’s phase 3 trials said.

“Many key trial findings were either misreported or omitted entirely from published reports,” the researchers said.

The study was conducted by seven top researchers:

M. Nathaniel Mead
Stephanie Seneff
Russ Wolfinger
Jessica Rose
Kris Denhaerynck
Steve Kirsch
Peter A. McCullough

In the study’s paper, the researchers explained that they set out to re-analyze Pfizer’s trial data because:

our understanding of covid vaccinations and their impact on health and mortality has evolved substantially since the first vaccine rollouts; and, problems with the methods, execution, and reporting of the pivotal phase 3 trials have emerged.

On Wednesday, they published their findings in a peer-reviewed paper titled “Covid-19 mRNA Vaccines: Lessons Learned from the Registrational Trials and Global Vaccination Campaign.”

The paper was published in the renowned Cureus, a journal of medical science.

“Re-analysis of the Pfizer trial data identified statistically significant increases in serious adverse events (SAEs) in the vaccine group,” the researchers wrote.

Adding, “Numerous SAEs were identified following the Emergency Use Authorisation (EUA), including death, cancer, cardiac events, and various autoimmune, hematological, reproductive, and neurological disorders.”

The EUA the researchers are referring to is the authorization granted to Pfizer by the U.S. Food and Drugs Administration (FDA).

As the paper noted, Pfizer’s Covid vaccines never underwent adequate safety and toxicological testing, according to previously established scientific standards.

Read more

AUTHOR

Pamela Geller

EDITORS NOTE: This Geller Report is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Republican Lawmakers Set Their Sights On Abortion ‘Trafficking’ In Latest Post-Dobbs Fight thumbnail

Republican Lawmakers Set Their Sights On Abortion ‘Trafficking’ In Latest Post-Dobbs Fight

By Dr. Rich Swier

  • Republican state lawmakers are going after abortion “trafficking” in an effort to stop abortion advocates from evading state bans around the country and protect pregnant minors. 
  • Idaho, Texas and now Tennessee have all pushed legislation on the issue and Republican state Rep. Jason Zachary of Tennessee told the Daily Caller News Foundation that his bill was personal after he had been “directly involved” with a family whose 14-year-old daughter had been taken away to get an abortion without their knowledge.
  • “It should be the easiest thing in the world to say it’s unacceptable for an adult to take somebody else’s kid anywhere without their parents knowing,” Katie Daniels, state policy director for Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America, told the DCNF.

Since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade in 2022, Republican state lawmakers have proposed a variety of pro-life laws, with three states placing a new focus on abortion “trafficking.”

Following the Dobbs decision, Idaho became the first state in 2023 to pass a bill enforcing criminal penalties for individuals “trafficking” a minor to another state to get an abortion and since then, Texas and Tennessee have followed suit on both the state and local levels. Republican state Rep. Jason Zachary of Tennessee told the Daily Caller News Foundation that he introduced his bill Monday after having been involved in a situation where a 14-year-old girl was taken without her parents’ knowledge to get an abortion last year.

“A young girl, a 14-year-old girl in East Tennessee, unbeknownst to her guardian was taken to West Tennessee and was not notified until the child was taken to West Tennessee. The child called the parents and said, ‘I’m in West Tennessee and I’m being taken to get an abortion.’ I was on the phone with the dad and the mom, [who were] crying asking me what I can do to help stop it. There was nothing I could do,” Zachary told the DCNF.

Zachary’s bill would make it a “criminal offense” for anyone other than a parent or guardian to take a minor out of Tennessee for an abortion and also “provide for a civil action against a person committing the offense of abortion trafficking of a minor for the wrongful death of an unborn child that was aborted,” according to the text. If passed a minor could not travel with someone other than their legal guardian to get a chemical or surgical abortion.

Texas has taken a slightly different approach than Idaho or Tennessee as multiple city councils have established new ordinances barring its citizens from being transported on their state highways to get an abortion, according to the Texas Tribune. The city council in Amarillo, Texas, is one of the latest to consider a travel ban but postponed any vote during a meeting on Dec. 19 for further review.

If passed, Amarillo’s ordinance would allow private citizens to sue anyone who “aids and abet[s]” someone to get an abortion using the highways, according to the Texas Tribune. Similar measures have been proposed in other counties, such as LubbockLlano, Odessa, Dallas and San Antonio, according to The Washington Post.

Some city council members have expressed concerns that the ordinances and their framing may be too extreme, according to the Post.

“I hate abortion. I’m a Jesus lover like all of you in here,” Llano councilwoman Laura Almond said during a meeting in August, according to the Post. She explained that in college she had once picked up a friend from an abortion clinic and that the law would have put her at risk of a lawsuit despite her personal beliefs on the subject.

“It’s overreaching,” Almond said during the meeting, according to the Post. “We’re talking about people here.”

Republicans have struggled on the issue of abortion over the last several elections due to poor messaging and a divided base regarding how strong candidates should be on pro-life issues. With the presidential election coming up in November, Katie Daniels, state policy director for Susan B. Anthony (SBA) Pro-Life America, told the DCNF that it will be important for Republican candidates endorsing any kind of abortion legislation, including anti-trafficking measures, to “talk about what they are for” and not just what they are against.

“It should be the easiest thing in the world to say it’s unacceptable for an adult to take somebody else’s kid anywhere without their parents knowing, let alone to another state for a medical procedure that’s illegal in their state. That should be a real point of consensus, regardless of political party,” Daniels said. “Beyond that, candidates should be talking about what they’re for. They’re for resources being available to women and their children, they’re for the pregnancy centers that help these women and they are for the life of both the mom and her baby.”

Daniels argued polling had found that “two-thirds of Americans” support parental notification and consent before minors can get a chemical abortion through the mail and a Rasmussen poll from July 2022 found that 64% of Americans support parental notification before a child gets an abortion.

“This is a very common sense position if you ask normal people. It’s politicians who are tied up to the industry that seem to have trouble with it,” Daniels told the DCNF.

AUTHOR

KATE ANDERSON

Contributor.

RELATED ARTICLE: CVS Employee Sues After Company Allegedly Revoked Religious Exemption To Avoid Prescribing Contraceptives

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.


All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our logo, our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Ohio Becomes 23rd State to Protect Minors from the Transgender Industry thumbnail

Ohio Becomes 23rd State to Protect Minors from the Transgender Industry

By Family Research Council

The bellwether state of Ohio has become the 23rd state to protect children from transgender injections and surgeries, and the 24th to safeguard fairness and privacy in women’s sports, as lawmakers voted overwhelmingly to override the Republican governor’s veto. Yet Democratic opponents claimed Martin Luther King Jr. and Jesus Christ would have supported transgender surgeries for kids, a transgender activist changed the words of a Christian hymn to support transgender surgeries, and liberals likened withholding cross-sex hormones from children to the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II.

The Ohio State Senate voted 24-8 on Wednesday afternoon to reverse the veto of Substitute H.B. 68 by Governor Mike DeWine (R). (The Senate erroneously announced the tally as 23-9 immediately after the vote.) The bill — which combines the Save Adolescents from Experimentation Act (SAFE) and the Save Women’s Sports Act — bans the use of puberty-blockers, cross-sex hormone injections, and gender mutilation surgeries to anyone under the age of 18. It also prohibits men from competing against women in sports, prevents courts from denying or limiting custody to a parent who refuses to “affirm” their child’s transgender identity, and refuses to fund minors’ transgender procedures through Medicaid.

The Ohio House of Representatives overrode the veto on January 10 by a 65-27 margin — four more votes than when the House first passed the bill on December 14. The bill will become state law in 90 days.

“Given that five legislatures have overridden gubernatorial vetoes of legislation protecting minors from the transgender activists pushing experimental drugs and surgeries, any governor who vetoes these SAFE Act-type laws is either politically tone-deaf or being influenced by those who profit from this morally devastating, but financially lucrative industry,” said Family Research Council President Tony Perkins. (Emphasis in original.) Supermajorities of state legislators voted to override Democratic governors’ vetoes of various gender protection bills in KansasKentuckyLouisiana, and North Carolina in 2023. Arkansas lawmakers also enacted the first SAFE Act over the veto of then-Governor and failed 2024 presidential candidate Asa Hutchinson (R).

Ohio to Trans Industry: ‘We Reject Your Junk Science’

“Today, Ohio has told an exploitative medical industry that we reject your junk science and will no longer allow you to experiment on our children,” said Aaron Baer, president of the Center for Christian Virtue (CCV), an Ohio-based citizen action group that spearheaded support for the override. “This marks a turning point in Ohio: we will not remain silent when our children are being harmed.” Alliance Defending Freedom Senior Counsel Matt Sharp thanked Ohio lawmakers for rejecting “the politicized and harmful practice of pushing minors towards irreversible drugs and surgeries in favor of compassionate mental health care that gives them time to grow into comfort with their bodies and true identities.”

“No one has the right to harm children, and, thankfully, states have the power — and duty — to protect them,” said Sharp. “Our most basic duty as parents is to protect our children,” said Peter Range, CEO of Ohio Right to Life, in a statement emailed to The Washington Stand. “Our children are our greatest legacy, and today’s vote ensures our children are protected in Ohio.” Thanks to the vote, “Child gender mutilation and gender ideology as a whole will end with a whimper,” said Chloe Cole, a detransitioner who testified in favor of the bill and returned to Columbus for Wednesday’s vote.

Democrats Invoke Jesus, Martin Luther King Jr., and Japanese Internment Camps to Argue for Transing Kids

The override vote overcame procedural roadblocks, disruptions by radical transgender activists, and disputes over whether the bill represented God’s will. Sen. Bill DeMora (D-25) moved to adjourn before the chamber could vote on the measure.

A transgender activist interrupted the very first speaker, Sen. Kristina Roegner (R-25), by singing an edited version of “Jesus Loves the Little Children” after fellow transgender activists booed and raised their middle fingers. “Jesus loves the little children. L-G-B-T-Q-I-A, He would be here — Jesus would be here — on their side today!” the activist belted out in the manner of a show tune, before being escorted out of the Capitol.

Democrats picked up the talking point, as Sen. Paul Hicks-Hudson (D-11) insisted overriding DeWine’s veto “does not show that Jesus does love all of us.”

“That same Jesus has determined the gender of every child. Let’s respect truly what Jesus” created, retorted Sen. Jerry Cirino (R-18). “Jesus does love all the little children, including the women who compete [in] sports,” said Sen. George F. Lang (R-4).

Yet Senate Democratic Leader Nickie Antonio (D-23) — who announced, “I’m a lesbian” during her floor speech — said refusing to experiment on children “wasn’t the Christianity I was brought up with.”

Hicks-Hudson also told lawmakers, “We are slapping” the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr., who once said it is necessary to become “maladjusted.”

Another Democrat compared Republicans denying minors cross-sex hormones and gender-reassignment surgeries to Democratic President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s order herding Japanese Americans into internment camps during World War II. Sen. Kent Smith (D-21), who noted he encountered men who identify as female in his “side-hustle” as a part-time roller derby announcer, compared his fellow Democrats to then-Colorado Governor Ralph Carr (R), who opposed Roosevelt’s order.

Smith, who accused his opponents of the “systematic dehumanization” of trans-identifying people, said one public school official told him she had more trans-identifying children in school than those who identified as homosexual.

Antonio invoked Issue 1, stating, “A majority of the voters spoke when they told us in November that the government shouldn’t be involved in their own personal, private health care decisions.” Yet during the debate over Issue 1, proponents steadfastly denied the amendment had any impact on transgender procedures for minors.

DeMora also inveighed that H.B. 68 “is anti-science and very hateful,” “horrible,” and “the inevitable outcome of this bill will be loss of life.” Legislators should pass laws “to make it easier” for children to get hormone injections, he stated.

Cross-sex hormone injections have caused females to suffer from side effects including “erythrocytosis, severe liver dysfunction, coronary artery disease, cerebrovascular disease, hypertension, increased risk of breast and uterine cancers, and irreversible infertility,” states H.B. 68. “For biological males,” such injections cause “thromboembolic disease, cholelithiasis, coronary artery disease, macroprolactinoma, cerebrovascular disease, hypertriglyceridemia, breast cancer, and irreversible infertility.”

“Suicide rates, psychiatric morbidities, and mortality rates remain markedly elevated above the background population after inpatient gender reassignment surgery has been performed,” the bill notes.

Lawmakers reluctantly added a grandfather clause for children who had already begun transgender procedures before the bill’s passage at DeWine’s request; yet he vetoed the bill anyway.

Transgender procedures are not what gender-confused minors need, said Sen. Roegner. “What they need to know is that they are loved for who they are. They need compassion; they need counseling. What they do not need is chemical castration, sterilization, or physical mutilation. We cannot let this happen to the children of Ohio,” she said. “It is medical malpractice, and it needs to stop.”

Similarly, Sen. Shane Wilkin (R-17) said safety guided his support for allowing girls to have their own space. “I, along with many in my district, do not want shared locker rooms with boys,” he said. “I find this issue is not as difficult as we’re making it out to be.”

Ohioans largely agree. Sen. Andy Brenner (R-19) revealed on Wednesday’s “Washington Watch with Tony Perkins” that 90% of the constituents who contacted his office urged him to protect children.

DeWine Yielded to ‘Experts’ on Transgenderism and COVID

Some in Ohio expressed surprise when DeWine, a centrist Republican, vetoed H.B. 68 on December 29. One week later, DeWine banned transgender surgery for minors by executive order, and he announced new regulations requiring greater psychological counseling for adults before and after transgender procedures. “I think it’s a good way to take this issue off the table” and “talk about other things,” said DeWine.

Brenner said, in lieu of longitudinal studies tracking the long-term impact of puberty-blockers on children, DeWine yielded to the dubious “consensus” of “experts” on transgender studies — much as he did “masking and lockdowns a few years ago” in response to COVID-19. “They don’t really have the data to back up what they’re doing,” Brenner noted.

Between DeWine’s executive actions and H.B. 68, “Ohio now has one of the strongest pieces to protect children in the nation,” said Cole at a press conference alongside the bill’s sponsor, State Rep. Gary Click (R-88), shortly after the vote.

“The SAFE Act and Save Women’s Sports Act are the civil rights issues of our day, ensuring that children have the right to grow up intact and that women are no longer subject to men invading their spaces,” said Click.

Wednesday was a “great day for Ohio women,” agreed State Rep. Jena Powell (R-80), who championed the Save Women’s Sports Act. “I promised to fight for integrity in women’s sports, and I did not give up until we won.” Liberty Counsel Action also called H.B. 68 “a win for the safety of women and children.”

Not everyone was pleased. “F*** the Ohio Senate,” cursed the Ohio Women’s Alliance Action Fund (which did not censor its message). OWA helped craft Issue 1, which opponents said was written to create a constitutional “right” to transgender procedures for minors without parental notification — a position OWA and many of its sponsors support. OWA Deputy Director Jordyn Close, who describes herself as “a sex and pleasure advocate … working on destigmatizing and uplifting sex work,” has said “all barriers to abortion are racist,” because “every abortion is essential.” Similarly, the capital city’s chapter of the Young Women’s Christian Alliance — YWCA Columbus — excoriated the allegedly “discriminatory bill” as “another demonstration of the state weaponizing control over bodily autonomy.”

Ohio Republicans said they stand ready to protect the state’s progress toward protecting the vulnerable and creating a more compassionate state. “I am prepared to defend it against the inevitable legal challenge,” said Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost (R).

While the bill’s passage is “a milestone for Ohio and the nation, there is still more to be accomplished,” said Rep. Click. “We must ensure that all individuals who experience regret have full access to both medical and mental health resources as they realign with their authentic selves.”

AUTHOR

Ben Johnson

Ben Johnson is senior reporter and editor at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

Red State Senate Kills Gov’s Veto On Bill Banning Child Sex Changes thumbnail

Red State Senate Kills Gov’s Veto On Bill Banning Child Sex Changes

By The Daily Caller

The Ohio Senate voted Wednesday to override Republican Gov. Mike DeWine’s veto of a bill that would prohibit doctors from performing sex-change medical procedures on minors.

The state’s House of Representatives voted 65 to 28 on Jan. 10 to override the governor’s veto of the bill, which would bar doctors from performing transgender surgeries or prescribing cross-sex hormones and puberty blockers to minors. State senators voted 28 to 4, largely among party lines, to pass the legislation.

“The Governor does not have [a] new comment today. His previous comments on the bill and his veto reflect his position on the issue,” Dan Tierney, DeWine’s press secretary, told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

I proudly stood up for parents and kids across Ohio and voted to override Gov. DeWine’s veto of HB 68!

Now, men will be kept out of women’s sports, and our children will be protected from dangerous experimental gender surgeries. pic.twitter.com/c7708tdhny

— Senator Michael Rulli (@michaelrulli) January 24, 2024

DeWine signed an executive order earlier this month that banned transgender surgeries for minors, but allowed children to obtain cross-sex hormones and puberty blockers. DeWine argued that he never disagreed with his Republican colleagues on the issue, but that other procedures should be left up to parents and medical professionals.

The bill, which is set to go into effect in 90 days, will also prevent men who identify as transgender women from competing in women’s sports, a decision DeWine has publicly come out against in the past. DeWine also received $40,000 in donations between 2018 and 2023 from several state children’s hospitals, at least one of which he visited in December to discuss the bill with families, patients and medical professionals.

A training video from one of the hospitals, Cincinnati Children’s, revealed staff teaching doctors how to work around parental consent when treating a minor transgender patient. The hospital’s CEO, Steven Davis, claimed in his December testimony against the bill that the hospital always gets consent from the parents before performing transgender medical procedures on minors.

AUTHOR

KATE ANDERSON

Contributor.

RELATED ARTICLES:

State Legislatures Are Taking On Gender Ideology In First Weeks Of 2024

Swing State Spent Millions On Sex Changes And Trans Hormones, Including For Those Under 18

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.


All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our logo, our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.