Good news and bad news about the Republican’s budget Reply

By Tom Quiner

The House Republicans unveiled their budget for America.

The good news: they’re cutting spending by $32 Billion from March 5th through October 31st.

The good news: it’s the biggest one time cut in discretionary spending in history.

The bad news: in their Pledge to America, they promised to cut spending by $100 Billion.

I’m willing to cut them some slack. After all, Democrats refused to even offer up a budget last year to avoid political heat. And the Republican’s cuts take a slice out of a half year’s worth of budget, not a whole year.

It’s a start.

We need more, a lot more. Let us hope the Tea Party keeps the heat on.


A riveting four minutes with Ronald Reagan 3

By Tom Quiner

How politically incorrect can one be!

The late, great Ronald Reagan delivered a memorable speech in 1983 in which he characterized the Soviet Union as an evil empire.

The press screamed.

Democrats screamed.

Liberals everywhere screamed.

That is not a very polite thing to say, Mr. President! After all, they are people very much like us. Maybe they’re a little misguided, but we’re not perfect either. After all, look at all the terrible things America has done.

Morality is always relative with the Left. They’re quick to point out their own nation’s flaws as quickly as they’re willing to excuse atrocities on the other side, whether they’re communists, Islamic fascists, or environmental whackos.

So to be politically incorrect, let us remember why Mr. Reagan characterized the Soviet Union as evil.

They seized nations and ruthlessly dominated them.

Elections weren’t allowed.

Freedom of the press was eradicated.

God was expunged from the public square and the home. (A woman from Poland told how the communists marched into the pharmacy her father owned and forced him to remove the crucifix from the wall.) Atheism was established as the state religion.

Innocents were killed and imprisoned in staggering proportions. In his book, The Great Terror, writer Robert Conquest presented these estimates of the carnage wrought by Joseph Stalin:

Arrests, 1937-1938 – about 7 million
Executed – about 1 million
Died in camps – about 2 million
In prison, late 1938 – about 1 million
In camps, late 1938 – about 8 million

This isn’t evil? It not, what is?

Ronald Reagan is remembered on his 100th birthday in a way that few others are … or will be. Why? Because he spoke with conviction. He didn’t care that it might make him unpopular with some folks. Ultimately, he was a leader, not a follower.

And he changed the world.

The evil empire is dead.

What’s the difference between Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama? 1

By Tom Quiner

Yesterday was Ronald Reagan’s 100th birthday.

I thought about him during the Super Bowl last night when the NFL presented the Declaration of Independence as narrated by General Colin Powell and NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell, which I have posted above.

Messrs. Reagan and Obama view the Declaration through such a different prism. Mr. Reagan’s take on fundamental rights is more in line with Founding Fathers Jefferson, Adams, and Madison than Mr. Obama, who categorically rejects the notion of a God-given right to life.

But there is another fundamental difference between the two men. Mr. Reagan views the American people as being smart.

Mr. Obama views the American people as being dumb.

How else does one explain President Obama’s overreach in his expansion of the federal government in our lives?

We yokels with our guns and Bibles need the nanny state, as administered by Washington elites, to take care of us is the view of Mr. Obama.

Ronald Reagan worked valiantly at getting government off our back. He thought we were more capable of figuring out how to spend our money than the government was.

Mr. Obama has inserted the federal government into our lives in ways the Founding Fathers never intended. He has signed legislation that will fine us, and even imprison us us, if we don’t buy a certain product, health insurance, whether we want it or not.

He takes our tax money and uses it to pay for abortions.

Mr. Reagan was often portrayed as being not very smart by liberals and the media. And yet look at how he changed the world. Communism crumbled. The economy boomed. Jobs were created. America got richer from bottom to top.

Ronald Reagan looked up to the American people.

Barack Obama looks down at the American people from his lofty perch.

President Reagan had a wisdom and leadership style that changed the world for the better.

We salute you, Ronald Reagan, on your 100th birthday!



The other right to life 2

By Kim Lehman

Last week, hundreds of thousands of Americans took to the streets of Washington DC to commemorate the 38th anniversary of Roe v. Wade.  But the March for Life is not just about abortion.  Ralliers hope to build a culture of life where the human person is viewed as sacred from conception to natural death.

Far from the DC streets where the marchers walk in protest, a movie opens next week in Iowa attempting to build a culture of life in a different way.  The Genesis Code, a family-friendly independent film, follows the fight of a college student, Blake Truman, to prevent his comatose mother’s death at the hands of his grandparents.  While they believe she would have chosen euthanasia over her silent battle against cancer, Blake refuses to roll over and watch his mother die.  His battle will rock his family and send him on a journey to find the hope he needs to help his mother live.

Euthanasia doesn’t quite get the same attention as abortion, despite being an issue borne of the same battle.  There are plenty of reasons: euthanasia isn’t legal in our country; euthanasia doesn’t inflame tensions with women’s rights’ and sexual license groups; euthanasia requires the consent of the victim.  But is our consent to live the only thing of value?

Assisted suicide remains suicide.  Those wishing to kill themselves are depressed, believing that they are an unwanted burden on their families, and families tacitly approve of this bitter assessment by fighting for their “right” to die.  Euthanasia advocates often use the term “dignity” — many voluntary suicide laws use terms like “Death with Dignity” and the biggest death clinic in Europe calls itself Dignitas.  But where’s the dignity in judging oneself unworthy of existence?  This Orwellian co-option of the word chills the bone.

All of the arguments for euthanasia deny the sacredness of life, thus putting all life in jeopardy as we consider someone more or less worthy of living based on their conditions.  As writer Malcolm Muggeridge observed, “This life in us; however low it flickers or fiercely burns, is still a divine flame which no man dare presume to put out, be his motives never so humane and enlightened; to suppose otherwise is to countenance a death-wish.”

A conditional understanding of the value of life leads to the execution of the weak.  The unborn child is killed to prevent what a parent feels would surely be a tragic life, and the aged parent is killed to prevent what would surely be a tragic death.  Both deaths are travesties which must be combated with a vigorous defense of the sacredness of human life.

Protest is one way to defend human dignity, but fights can also be waged at the box office.  For the other side of the story on euthanasia, defenders of the right to life would do well to check out The Genesis Code.

[Thanks to Kim Lehman for her guest submission to Quiner’s Diner. Mrs. Lehman is the Development Director for the John Paul II Stem Cell Research Institute.  She is also the former President of Iowa Right to Life.]


Free choice is the path to better schools Reply

By Tom Quiner

Kelley Williams-Bolar is going to jail for the crime of wanting a better education for her kids.

This has been Catholic Schools Week and National School Choice Week. Ms. Williams-Bolar’s plight would have been avoided had Democrats not blocked her desire to send her kids to a nice school in the suburbs rather than an inner-city school. In other words, this African-American woman would have avoided jail if a school choice program was in place in her Ohio school district.

Her crime? She falsified documents that claimed her two daughters lived with their father in the nicer neighborhood. Her crime is a felony.

School choice and school voucher programs create opportunities to send their kids to better schools, whether public, private, charter, religious, or secular. It’s not about abandoning public education.

We know members of the last Reid/Pelosi Congress believe in choice. After all, 44 percent of Senators and 36 percent of Congressmen sent their kids to private schools. And yet it is the Democratic party that blocks school choice programs that would allow working class and inner city families have some of their same opportunities.

Does school choice really make a difference? A program was run in Washington D.C. called the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program. Results were impressive. Test scores were better for voucher recipients. They had a reading advantage of 3.1 months ahead of non-voucher recipients, and the equivalent of 3.7 months of total additional learning, according to a report by the Heritage Foundation.

Despite the success of the program, Democrats in Congress de-funded the program.

I mentioned Catholic schools at the outset because of their notable success in our nation’s inner cities where their graduation rates are 95% compared to 50% in public schools. A school choice program would allow more kids access to these quality schools.

The National Education Foundation and other teacher’s unions fight free choice in public schools. They are huge financial supporters of Democratic candidates.

It’s time to stop criminalizing a mother’s desire for a good education for her kids. Let’s expand free choice now.