stat counnnter

Friday, March 26, 2010

Blogroll Update Mar. 2010

It's time again for another blogroll update. Not all of the sites below are hosted by objectivists but are still very rational, enjoyable reads.

First will be Jihad Watch a blog devoted to watching and tracking the jihadist movement within Islam.

Second will be the music of M. Zachary Johnson. A good sampling of his own compositions on Sax.

Third is Illustrated Ideas hosted by Robert Tracy, a military man.

Fourth is STATS, a blog of statistical assessment at George Mason University. If you're sceptical about so-called scientific studies that purport to tell you what's good or harmful for you, STATS likes to go over those studies with a fine tooth comb and show you what's wrong with them.

Fifth is The Anger of Compassion where Craig Ceely is again reporting on current events.

Sixth will be Alaxander Marriott's Wit and Wisdom. Alex's blogging may be light for a short time but he promises to get back to it soon.

Seventh is The Advice Goddess where journalist Amy Alkon gives advice on almost anything.

The next four are about paleo dieting and living which I recommend. Being on a low carb regimen myself I have found valuable low carb recipes, info on vitamin supplements, exercise and more. Their blogrolls lead to more sites of interest.

Eighth is Free the Animal. Here Richard Nikoley blogs not just on paleo eating but paleo living.

Along the same line, #9 is Modern Paleo, a new blog by Christian W. and Diana Hsieh on paleo eating and living written by objectivists.

Number 10 is Mark's Daily Apple another good paleo site.

Eleventh is OEvolve, another good objectivist list of rational eating managed by Monica Hughes that you can just observe as a lurker, like me, or sign up to be a poster on your experiences and ask questions as well.

Twelfth is another good blog on parenting by Rachel Miner called Playful Spirit.

That's it for now but there will be another update in April. Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Urgent Action Required.

With his permission I'm reprinting this post by Dr. Paul Hsieh and I recommend everyone contact your House Rep. and urge them to vote no on the health bill now before the House.

This upcoming week will be *the* critical week in the health care
fight. Speaker Pelosi is expected to start the process for the House
to hold its final vote to approve the Senate Bill. The vote will
probably take place at the end of this upcoming week.

Right now, they are probably still a few votes shy of the majority
they need:

"Dem House vote-counter lacks health care votes now"

"Can Nancy Pelosi Get the Votes?"
Michael Barone, Wall Street Journal, 3/11/2010

Hence, this is an *extremely* risky move by the Democrats.
Normally, a Speaker wouldn't plan on voting on such major
legislation unless he or she was sure of having enough votes.

But the Democrats are also (correctly) concluding that time is not
on their side. They have made the calculation that if they push for
it now, then maybe then can squeeze out the last few votes via a
combination of threats and bribes. For example, they have
"sweetened" the deal for the wavering moderates by promising
billions of dollars of new student loan subsidies:

On the other hand they recognize that if they wait much longer,
then when these wavering Congressmen go back home for the
Easter recess, they will get an earful from their constituents who are
strongly opposed to the bill, and they'll lose even more support:

Hence, from the Democrats' perspective, it's now or never.

From our perspective, this means three things:

1) We are winning. We have a chance to defeat this terrible bill.

In particular, do not get discouraged when you read the inevitable
news stories about how the Democrats are "close to getting the
votes" or how Pelosi is "confident she'll have the votes". She has
to exude an aura of public confidence, otherwise her coalition will
quickly unravel.

Polls repeatedly show Americans opposed to ObamaCare:

"Why Obama Can't Move the Health-Care Numbers"
Rasmussen and Schoen, Wall Street Journal, 3/9/2010

Similarly, head counts of House Democrats also show that they
don't quite have enough votes yet:

"Scrambling for votes, Democrats face uphill climb to pass
healthcare reform"
The Hill, 3/13/2010

"The Hill's 'Whip Count' on ObamaCare -- as of 3/13/2010"

If they had the votes, they'd have already passed it by now.

2) We have to keep the pressure up. The Democrats are pulling out
all stops to find some way to get this through now, before the
critical Easter recess.

At this point in time, the single most important thing you can do is
tell your Congressman to vote "NO" on this bill:

This is especially important if your Congressman is one of the
undecided or swing votes on this "Code Red" list:

But even if your Congressman is a firm "Yes", it's still important to
let them know. If even the liberal Democrats from "safe" seats
consistently hear that their constituents are against it, it will give the
wavering moderates more political cover to vote "No". They can
tell their Pelosi, "Even *your* constituents hate this thing -- there's
no way I can support it".

*** Our counter-pressure is our best weapon against the pressure
that the statists will exert on these wavering Congressmen. ***

Your letter doesn't have to long or eloquent. It just has to convey
certainty, passion, and moral conviction. Something short and
simple like:

"Please vote NO on this terrible health care plan! If you vote yes,
you will destroy the ability of me and my family to receive good
health care in the future. This is personal! If you vote yes, we will
never forgive you for hurting our lives and trampling on our basic

(You may wish to adapt that to suit your own style and values.)

Feel free to use all contact methods - phone, fax, and e-mail. And
please feel free to contact them multiple times over the upcoming
week. In this context, repetition is a virtue!

And of course, if your Congressman is a probable or firm "No",
then thank him or her for his position. They also need our moral

3) If you have friends or family in other parts of the country, tell
them to do the same thing and contact *their* Congressmen:

If you need intellectual ammunition for them, one of my personal
favorites is from the AFCM website:

"Fifty Fallacies About Health Care" by Richard Ralston

Jared Rhoads' Lucidicus Project also has a good set of OpEds:

And of course, FIRM has its archive of articles/OpEds:

I personally think that the most important thing we can do in the
next few days will be to directly contact our Congressmen and have
friends/family do the same. LTE's and OpEds will still be
important, but not as much as before. (That said, I'm stilll going to
continue writing and/or disseminating some of my earlier writings
to people I know around the country.)

This is the endgame, folks. Most political observers regard the
health care bill as a 50-50 "toss-up" or "too close to call". It really
could go either way. What happens this week will set the course of
this great country (for good or for ill) for decades to come.

Your voice could be the critical difference in swaying the right one
or two minds. If you value your lives and your freedom, the time
to speak up is *now*!

(Anyone is welcome to forward or repost this e-mail to any
appropriate recipients or venues.)

-- Paul
Paul Hsieh, MD