Issue CXCIV

May 2-7, 2009

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Argumentation
Against a Theology Requirement at Hillsdale College: Responses and Elaborations:
G. Stolyarov II

May 2, 2009
On April 16, 2009, the Hillsdale Collegian published an
editorial by Mr. Stolyarov opposing the plan to institute a compulsory theology course requirement in the Hillsdale core curriculum. Since then, several individuals – most notably, Dr. John Reist, David Stehlik, and Derek Muller – published responses in opposition to his arguments. Here, Mr. Stolyarov intends to address these responses in as much detail as heI can in order to prevent a policy decision which, he believes, will significantly impair the educational quality and cultural atmosphere at Hillsdale – to the point that the college would no longer be worthy of his support or the support of advocates of genuine individual liberty. 

Culture
Why on Earth Do We Tolerate Bullying?:
Bradley Doucet

May 3, 2009
How serious is bullying? Some look on it as just a rite of passage for the brainy to endure the abuse of the brawny. It toughens you up, preparing you to deal with the hard knocks of adult life.  But is bullying really just a normal part of growing up? Bradley Doucet does not think so, and he does not believe that the torture many intelligent children endure on a daily basis should be allowed to continue.

Economics
The Cost of Cap and Trade:
Robert P. Murphy

May 3, 2009
Recently Congress took a break from nationalizing corporations and discussed the Waxman-Markey “cap and trade” bill, in which the federal government would auction off permits to businesses, giving them legal permission to emit carbon dioxide.  During the four days of hearings, one of the most contentious issues was how much the plan would cost.  Some (Republican) opponents cited an MIT study and announced that the average household would pay $3,100 in higher prices because of the program. But the MIT professor denounced this interpretation as being “wrong in so many ways it’s hard to begin.”  The professor went on to say that households would only pay only $800 per year because of cap and trade, which was certainly much less than the $3,100 figure. Yet, writes Dr. Robert Murphy,  a closer analysis of the professor’s clarification shows that this isn’t a quibble over arithmetic.  His figure of $800 refers to a very subtle economic concept, and is not what most voters probably have in mind when they ask, “How will a cap and trade program affect my family budget?”

Fewer Taxes for Real Economic Stimulus:
Ron Paul

May 5, 2009
Taxes were the issue last month as Americans struggled to make the April 15th deadline to file their returns. Rep. Ron Paul believes that the income tax is one of the most egregious encroachments on our liberties today.  It is a form of involuntary servitude, which was supposed to have been outlawed by the 13th Amendment.

Politics
When Government Plays Doctor:
Ron Paul

May 5, 2009
This week, concerns about swine flu have dominated the media and many government officials.  While the American people should be made aware of infectious diseases and common-sense preventative measures, Rep. Ron Paul believes that much of the hysterical reaction from the federal government only serves to remind us how detrimental to your health it can be when government plays doctor. 

The U. S. Forbids Torture:
Jim Camp

May 5, 2009
Jim Camp believes that fighting against an evil political regime or a warped one that uses religion as the guise for totalitarian control is a good thing, the right thing. History teaches us that it is our moral responsibility. It is immoral, however, to torture. That is what lies at the very heart of the current debate about its use. People can honestly disagree about torture, but they cannot escape the question of whether its use puts this nation in the same dark room as those who torture.

Stop Them Before They Start:
Marita Noon

May 5, 2009
Marita Noon examines a recent federal law which had the seemingly uninteded consequence of banning the sales of all children's motorcycles -- using the presence of unsafe lead paint as a justification. But Ms. Noon asks whether there might have been ulterior motives to this law's passage.

Back to the "Good Old Days":
Paul Driessen

May 7, 2009
Many activists, bureaucrats, politicians and even some corporate executives present arbitrary CO2 reduction targets and timetables casually and with great fanfare – as though achieving them were simple, desirable and necessary. In reality, reducing America’s carbon dioxide levels to 80% below 1990 levels would return the United States to emission levels last seen in 1905… and that’s before accounting for changes in population and energy-based technology. The impact on our nation’s economy, employment, manufacturing, living standards and health would be profoundly negative. Paul Driessen’s commentary seeks to bring these facts to light – and present fresh perspectives on cap-and-tax proposals, CO2 reductions, and wind energy “substitutes” for the hydrocarbons that make our modern lives possible.


Pakistan Implodes:
Alan Caruba

May 7, 2009
Alan Caruba fears that the wars going on in the Middle East will soon be the entire world’s next war as the fanatic Islamists throughout the region threaten to take over Pakistan and Afghanistan while continuing to wage war in Iraq. If they’re successful, India will be dragged into the full-scale battle against the Taliban and al Qaeda. Where it spreads from there is anyone’s guess.

Science
Solar Scenarios:
Alan Caruba

May 7, 2009
While politicians preach“global warming”, talk of green jobs, and refuse to permit energy industries to have access to oil, natural gas, or coal, while planning to tax the emissions from what energy we do use, the Sun has other plans. Alan Caruba discusses James A. Marusek's alarming prognosis that changes in solar activity could dramatically impact the quality of life on Earth in the future. If this is a threat, cutting off opportunities for technological developments that would address it is quite unwise at present.

"Do you want to know who you are? Don't ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you." 
~ Thomas Jefferson