Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Robby George struggles with Plato, Victoria Beeching

Robert P. George
Yesterday, Robert P. George wrote a fanciful piece for First Things about the recent coming out of Victoria Beeching. One senses that George felt that the commentary was obligatory on behalf of the Catholic Church.

Beeching, who has a degree in theology from Oxford, is a popular Christian rock musician. She is currently pursuing a PhD from Durham University in England. Beeching is a frequent commentator on British radio and TV.

Robert P. George, a presumed Opus Deist, is a tenured professor at Princeton University. George is a co-founder of National Organization for Marriage and has been a reliable advocate for gay inequality on behalf of the Catholic Church. When George has something (self) “important” to say he often does so on the conservative Catholic blog First Things. According to the professor:

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Five-decade study offers bleak outcome for adults who were bullied as children

According to a 50-year study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry children who are bullied continue to be at risk for a wide range of poor social, health and economic outcomes. This is especially true for individuals who are frequently bullied.

These include increased levels of psychological stress at ages 23 and 50 with higher rates of depression, anxiety disorders, substance dependency and suicide. Overall, childhood bullying is associated with a lack of social relationships, economic hardship and poor quality of life (including cognitive impairment) at age 50.

We, in the LGBT community, need to be especially mindful of the effects of bullying. The study did not examine the sexual orientation of victims. However, LGBT children are far more likely to be bullied than their peers.

Schlafly: 'Libertarian Support for Gay Marriage Rooted in Communist Attack on Family'

The corpse pretending to be Phyllis Schlafly is red baiting or gay baiting or … something. In an Op-Ed in the Christian Post, Schlafly explores the works of some prominent laissez-faire enthusiasts. She then answers a rhetorical query:
If nothing in Friedrich Hayek, Ludwig von Mises, Murray Rothbard or Ayn Rand supports the abolition, redefinition, or privatization of marriage, then where did those ideas come from? The answer is that they came from writers on the left -- most significantly, from The Communist Manifesto written by Karl Marx and published in 1848.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Thinking about Robin Williams - Mental illness is not a character flaw

Robin Williams' tragic death was entirely preventable. As a society we need to stop relegating mental illness to something different from any other illness. Chronic depression is as potentially lethal as stage five cancer. There are medically appropriate treatments for both.

Today, Christian movie critic, Ted Baehr, had the temerity to claim that Williams would not have killed himself had he come to Christ. Tell that to Rick Warren whose son recently committed suicide. Does Mr. Baehr have an advanced degree in psychology? Has he done a hospital residency? When it comes to mental illness a great many ignorant people claim to know a great deal more than they do.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

NOM now thinks that they can influence SCOTUS

This afternoon's press release is headlined “National Organization for Marriage Calls for Supreme Court Stay of Decision Striking Down Virginia's Marriage Amendment.” Seriously? Are these people that dense that they believe that they can affect a decision by the United States Supreme Court?

Perhaps, given the statement from Bryan Brown that follows, they do think that they have some sway over the Court:

When did conservative Christian organizations cynically determine that their members were idiots?

Conservative Christian organizations routinely assume that their constituencies are spectacularly stupid. Consider; “Off The Mark: Target Publicly Opposes Natural Marriage.” That is the title of a blog post of Citizens for Community Values. According to the post (which is lacking an author attribution):
Do you shop at Target or Starbucks? You should know that they and others are publicly opposed to Natural Marriage. To see a comprehensive list of where companies stand on marriage, life, and other important issues, go to 2ndvote.com.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Gov't reminds court that NOM LOST its case against the IRS

On August 8, 2014 the US Attorney filed a response to a request by National Organization for Marriage for reimbursement of nearly $700,000 in attorneys' fees. The fees, which are supported by time logs and affidavits from the lawyers involved, were allegedly disbursed in connection with NOM's litigation against the Internal Revenue Service.

The government's response is that the United States was the prevailing party in the litigation. NOM, therefore, is entitled to $0 which relieves the court of having to perform substantive analysis of the sums involved.

In a settlement of this matter, NOM agreed to receive $50,000 in damages. Therefore, any reimbursement below $650,000 (in round numbers) represents a direct loss to NOM. That presupposes that all of the sums were actually disbursed and are not contingent on reimbursement. With the sometimes truth-challenged John Eastman involved, one never knows for sure.