It turns out that growing up poor can actually affect brain structure according to a paper published in Nature Neuroscience. A comprehensive study which considered such variables as age, sex, genetic ancestry and even parental education found a logarithmic association between income and brain surface area in children between 3 and 20 years of age.
Among children from lower income families, small differences in income were associated with relatively large differences in surface area, whereas, among children from higher income families, similar income increments were associated with smaller differences in surface area. These relationships were most prominent in regions supporting language, reading, executive functions and spatial skills; surface area mediated socioeconomic differences in certain neurocognitive abilities. These data imply that income relates most strongly to brain structure among the most disadvantaged children.
Now that is the best reason yet to undo the damage of Michelle Obama’s school lunch program instituted in the name of a war on child obesity.
If you read nothing else today, real American Thinker’s The Federalist Papers and Obamacare. Besides some applicable quotes from Founding Fathers James Madison and Alexander Hamilton, the article succinctly encapsulates how I feel on the Obamination of socialized medicine (emphasis added):
The Founding Fathers defined the citizens as the natural guardians of the Constitution. Ultimately, it comes down to us. Remember the immortal motto of Gen. Nathaniel Greene who led his rag-tag militia across the Carolina in 1779-1780, “lost” every battle until providing the Continentals their first major victory at Kings Mountain and cut down Cornwallis’ troops from 30,000 to 15,000 before he quit Charleston and headed to Yorktown:
“I fight, I am defeated, I rise and fight again.”
It is precisely now that one must not despair. Now is the time for lovers of liberty to throw themselves into the national scale. You are the natural guardians of the Constitution. Now is not the time for Summer Soldiers and Sunshine Patriots; now is the time for the heirs of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, John Hancock, Ben Franklin, James Monroe, John Adams, John Paul Jones, Patrick Henry, Nathaniel Greene and Ethan Allen.
You have a choice. What will it be? Acquiescence? Submission? Defeat? Where would we be if all the aforementioned had quit when they faced a little headwind (and, comparatively speaking, this is light breeze next to Valley Forge). Be ashamed; be very ashamed if you choose to go gently into that dark neo-Soviet night. Be assured; a new dawn of American liberty will rise as American Patriots resolve to protect their Constitution and use all of its provisions to protect their liberties.
The Obama administration wants law enforcement to be able to track citizens wherever they travel by demanding cell phone records without a warrant.
In that case, the Obama administration has argued that warrantless tracking is permitted because Americans enjoy no “reasonable expectation of privacy” in their–or at least their cell phones’–whereabouts. U.S. Department of Justice lawyers say that “a customer’s Fourth Amendment rights are not violated when the phone company reveals to the government its own records” that show where a mobile device placed and received calls. . . .
“The biggest issue at stake is whether or not courts are going to accept the government’s minimal view of what is protected by the Fourth Amendment,” says EFF’s Bankston. “The government is arguing that based on precedents from the 1970s, any record held by a third party about us, no matter how invasively collected, is not protected by the Fourth Amendment.”
The government does not need to know where I am, where I was, or who I was with. Ever.
The government needs money and “health advocates” are advocating adding yet another $1 per pack tax on cigarettes. While the billions in tax revenue would be welcome to cash strapped states, I am firmly opposed to “sin taxes” in general.
Legislative power should not be used to punish legal behavior. If you want to make people stop smoking, make it illegal. Don’t try to tax it out of existence. The poorest of our citizens bear the brunt of the additional taxes, and rather than dedicating the money to health programs it goes into the general pool where it is wasted by our politicians.
Remember, next comes raising taxes on beer, then hamburgers and milkshakes, then whatever else our liberal tree-hugging, granola-crunching, “I-know-what’s-best-for-you” surrender monkeys decides we should stop doing (“for our own good”, of course).
Sin taxes. Blech.
Technorati Tags: Sin Taxes and Other Unethical Government Behavior
Obama’s budget includes lowering the amount that those in the highest tax brackets can deduct for charitable contributions. The wealthy will have to pay higher taxes and simultaneously be getting less financial benefit from charitable giving.
Some once-flourishing local charities have been unable to survive. Family Services of the Mid-South, a 115-year-old nonprofit, is closing this week after transferring a few of its programs to other agencies. The Destiny Foundation of Central Florida, which ran a children’s clinic, thrift store and food pantry in Orlando, has suspended its operations and may close.
A recent survey by the Human Services Council of New York City, encompassing 244 local nonprofits, found that 60 percent had seen some decrease in public funding and 73 percent reported reductions in private donations. More than half had laid off staff in the past year, and 35 percent had eliminated programs.
One of the city’s oldest and largest charities – the Brooklyn Bureau of Community Service – has laid off about 50 of its 550 employees. It’s also eliminated a program that helped disabled people make the transition from welfare to work, and scaled down a program that’s helping kids from troubled homes avoid foster care.
And that was last year. Children’s clinics, homeless shelters for families, food banks, shops that clothe children — all are in danger as the national debt rises and unemployment remains high.
Consider giving whatever you can. In the meantime, just know that Obama hates children.
Even though I consider myself a Libertarian, I don’t always agree with CATO. But they are 100% correct when they say Tea Partiers Shouldn’t Date the GOP:
The quality that gives the Tea Party movement its legitimacy is that it is so fundamentally illegitimate: outside the establishment, bereft of representation on K Street, and without an identifiable face to speak for it on Meet the Press. This is a movement that sprang deep from within the viscera of America, not from some political poll or focus group.
It is not Republican; it is not even conservative. It has no interest in debating the merits of No Child Left Behind, abstinence-only sex education or George W. Bush’s rationale for going to Iraq. Replacing a “spend and borrow” Democrat with a “spend and borrow” Republican is not the goal of the Tea Party movement.
This movement is simply saying: “We are fine without you, Washington. Now for the love of God, go attend a reception somewhere, and stop making health care and entrepreneurship more expensive than they already are.”
Machiavelli once said a republic stays healthy by returning to its first principles from time to time. The Tea Party movement is trying to get our nation back to its first principles to prevent our decline.
I stopped giving to the GOP when they had control of the House, Senate, and White House and started acting like Democrats. Road to nowhere, stalling on reducing capital gains taxes, Bush supporting Arlen Specter instead of endorsing Pat Toomey, and so on. I swore then that the Republican Party would never get another penny. And they haven’t.
I highly recommend giving to the Club for Growth. Every penny of your money will go to politicians that support limited government and lower taxes, no matter what their party is.
The Fix wonders is the Senate majority now in play?
With the developments in Illinois and Indiana over the past 24 hours, the Cook Political Report now carries 10 Democratic-held seats in their most competitive categories — meaning, theoretically, that if Republicans ran the table (and lost none of their own toss up seats in Kentucky, Missouri, New Hampshire and Ohio) they could get to 51 seats and the Senate majority.
Is it a longshot? Absolutely. But, remember that recent history has shown that in a national political landscape tipped in favor of one party a strong majority of toss up contests tend to fall that party’s way.
The good news is that the Dem president is such an inexperienced, inept, blundering, one-foot-always-in-mouth, out-of-touch, economy-wrecking socialist. That means independents are fleeing from him almost as fast as “moderate” conservatives.
The bad news is he is so incredibly bad that conservatives hate him with such vitriol that the resulting rhetoric turns independents away from the effort to take back the country. So says a poll from (of all places) Daily Kos, as reported by Politico:
The poll of 2,000 Republicans — sponsored by the liberal website but conducted by independent pollster Research2000 — paints a picture of a Republican base that’s angry, disaffected and acutely hostile to President Barack Obama. Thirty-nine percent of Republicans polled think Obama should be impeached, 36 percent say he wasn’t born in the United States and one in four say they aren’t even sure he’s a U.S. citizen. Another 63 percent labeled the president a “socialist.”
Those numbers are far higher than similar polls of Democrats and independents — polls that reveal dissatisfaction with many of Obama’s programs but not with the president personally.
“It was the first time we ever asked the impeachment question, … but ask independents if Obama was born in the U.S., and about 85 percent say yes,” said Research2000 President Del Ali.
“This shows a huge vulnerability for Republicans,” says Jef Pollock, a veteran pollster and Democratic strategist working for Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Pa.) — who was forced to bolt from the GOP after conservative Pat Toomey attacked him from the right.
“Independents, who are particularly disinclined toward any kind of partisan rhetoric, are going to be turned off when they hear Republicans say stuff like this, which is patently crazy,” Pollock said.
Well, not “patently crazy”, but at least too late. The time to see the birth certificate was during the election, no after he was seated. Time to forge ahead and try to save the country from bankruptcy. Which is why I will not stop calling Obama a socialist. ‘Cause he is.
There have been a few articles lately about Republicans making better use of social media than Democrats. I had my doubts, but PolitiFact.com investigates:
First stop: Twitter.
Earlier this month, Mark Senak, senior vice president and partner at Fleishman-Hillard, a public relations firm in Washington, D.C., issued a report titled “Twongress: The Power of Twitter in Congress” in which he analyzed the Twitter use of all members of Congress. The findings surprised him.
In Congress, he found, there are 132 members using Twitter actively: 89 Republicans and 43 Democrats. It breaks down like this: In the Senate, there are 14 Republicans using Twitter compared to 11 Democrats; and in the House, there are 75 Republicans using Twitter (42.13 percent of the Republican Caucus) and 32 Democrats (12.45 percent of the Democratic Caucus). . . .
What about YouTube?
On Jan. 21, 2010, YouTube’s CitizenTube posted a year-end wrap-up that showed 89 percent of Republicans and 74 percent of Democrats in Congress have started YouTube channels to engage their constituents. More importantly, people are watching the Republican channels much more often. According to the report, eight of the top 10 most-viewed and most-subscribed YouTube channels in Congress are from the GOP, though Democrats took two of the top three spots. The top 4, in order, are Rep. Alan Grayson, D-Fla., Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Ca., and Boehner.
A tracking of YouTube views by industry analyst TubeMogul shows that with few exceptions, Republican videos consistently drew more clicks than those from Democrats. . . .
And lastly, Facebook, the favorite of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. Palin’s Facebook page has more than 1.2 million fans.
No one in the House has that kind of reach. And we couldn’t find any comprehensive analysis of engagement on FaceBook by members of Congress. But as of Jan. 22, 2010, Boehner had 31,757 fans of his page, compared to 8,745 for Pelosi. . . .
But while House Republicans may rightly crow about deeper engagement in social media than their Democratic counterparts, Senak. the author of the study, says neither side is doing particularly well compared to other large institutions. Both parties have a minority of members engaged in Twitter. And neither side has fully embraced the give-and-take of Twitter. Most members have elected to follow very few other people and rarely “re-tweet.” In other words, he said, they are mostly using Twitter as a soapbox.
In spite of the conclusion in final paragraph above, the fact that so many Congressmen have seized on modern communication channels is surprising. More surprising is the Republican’s lead, given Obama’s rather effective use of these channels during his campaign.