Saturday, September 30, 2006

The Future belongs to...

OpinionJournal - Best of the Web Today: "A pair of USA Today articles look at the 'marriage gap' and the 'fertility gap' in American politics--that is, the tendency of places with high rates of connubiality and parturition to vote Republican. Among the findings:

Republicans control 49 of the 50 [congressional] districts with the highest rates of married people.

Democrats represent all 50 districts that have the highest rates of adults who have never married.

GOP Congress members represent 39.2 million children younger than 18, about 7 million more than Democrats. Republicans average 7,000 more children per district. . . .

Democrats represent 30 districts in which less than half of children live with married parents. Republicans represent none.

USA Today doesn't make much effort to explain this; about the closest it comes is this evenhanded quote from Prof. Arthur Brooks of Syracuse University: 'Both sides are very pro-kids. They just express it in different ways. Republicans are congenial to traditional families, which is clearly the best way for kids to grow up. But there are some kids who don't have that advantage, and Democrats are very concerned with helping those kids.'

Neither article, though, ever mentions the Democratic Party's status as champion of abortion, which seems to us to have great explanatory power. Obviously there is the Roe effect: Pro-abortion women, who are more likely to be Democrats, are more likely to abort their children, which gives Republicans a demographic advantage.

Abortion is related to the marriage gap too. Abortion is a "single" issue in more ways than one: Every poll we've seen shows that unwed people of both sexes are far more pro-abortion than the espoused. This makes perfect sense: Singles, with their slapdash sex lives, are both unlikely to want kids and less likely than married couples to have reliable birth-control rituals. Thus they feel much more acutely the need for abortion as a last resort should they become or make someone pregnant. If you live in a place like New York, you'll find lots of young adults who say they vote Democratic only because of abortion.

Of course, many of these people eventually get hitched and move to the suburbs, where some become Republicans, either because their views on abortion change or because it recedes in importance to them. (Relatedly, Republicans do better among wealthier voters; and wealth, like marriage, is a status to which many people who do not enjoy it aspire.)

Republicans, then, are outbreeding Democrats and doing better among voters whose personal lives are the most successful. All in all, the party of abortion is an unfruitful thing for the Democrats to be."

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Afraid of the Fear of Terror

SPIEGEL ONLINE - News: "And now the Deutsche Oper in Berlin has taken Mozart's opera 'Idomeneo' off its schedule after a 'risk analysis' produced by Germany's Office of Criminal Investigation (LKA) concluded that 'the possibility of performances being disrupted cannot be ruled out.' The opera is more than 200 years old. This performance was to be directed by Hans Neuenfels, and it featured Idomeneo, the King of Crete, stepping onto the stage with a bloody sack containing the severed heads of Poseidon, Jesus, Buddha and Muhammad. "
And whatever you do, don't say radical Islamists are violent, or else.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Lies, Damn Lies, and Global Warming

OpinionJournal - Extra: "Ambiguous scientific statements about climate are hyped by those with a vested interest in alarm, thus raising the political stakes for policy makers who provide funds for more science research to feed more alarm to increase the political stakes. After all, who puts money into science--whether for AIDS, or space, or climate--where there is nothing really alarming? Indeed, the success of climate alarmism can be counted in the increased federal spending on climate research from a few hundred million dollars pre-1990 to $1.7 billion today. It can also be seen in heightened spending on solar, wind, hydrogen, ethanol and clean coal technologies, as well as on other energy-investment decisions.

But there is a more sinister side to this feeding frenzy. Scientists who dissent from the alarmism have seen their grant funds disappear, their work derided, and themselves libeled as industry stooges, scientific hacks or worse. Consequently, lies about climate change gain credence even when they fly in the face of the science that supposedly is their basis."

Looks like Big Tobacco has competition from Big Green. Read the whole thing.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Young, Restless, Reformed

Christianity Today Magazine: "Not all of these youth know Piper's theological particulars. But plenty do, and Piper, more than anyone else, has contributed to a resurgence of Reformed theology among young people. You can't miss the trend at some of the leading evangelical seminaries, like Trinity Evangelical Divinity School, which reports a significant Reformed uptick among students over the past 20 years. "
Crazy Dog

This is what the internet is all about.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Bill Clinton Freaks Out

He didn't do it because he couldn't.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Dead Tree Media almost Dead

New York Times forecasts lower quarterly earnings | Business News | "NEW YORK (Reuters) - The New York Times Co. (NYT.N: Quote, Profile, Research) on Thursday forecast sharply lower third-quarter earnings because of a 'challenging' print advertising market, sending shares down nearly 5 percent in after-hours trading."
I'm shocked, shocked.

Economic Networks

Time Warner chief queries internet prices - Financial Times - "Facebook, a social networking site aimed at college and high school students, is run by its 22-year-old founder, Mark Zuckerberg.

The company has been in talks with numerous media groups, including Yahoo, Microsoft and Viacom.

Media executives said most media companies had taken a look but so far there was no appetite to pay the $1bn being sought by Facebook's backers.

YouTube, a video sharing site founded less than two years ago and also run by founders in their 20s, has become one of the top destinations for video content.

Rupert Murdoch, chairman and chief executive officer of News Corporation, acquired MySpace, the world's most popular social networking site, last year for $580m.

Since then, Mr Murdoch has struck a deal with Google that guarantees income from search-word advertising of $700m over the next four years."

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Lessons from a Punker Ph.D.

Christianity Today Magazine: "After twenty years of listening to the punk band Bad Religion, I sent the group's front man a note. I greeted Greg Graffin, told him that he had fans among Christian college professors, and I asked about his doctoral work at Cornell University.

I was surprised to get a note back—and then another. After a few months I printed our emails. They came to over 100 pages.

Very little of the written conversation between Greg and me concerns the music of Bad Religion. He gets enough fan mail. Instead, we discussed what my students would call the 'big questions.' What is life for? What are people for? Why do people think God exists? If you listen to Bad Religion's lyrics, you know that these kinds of questions are important to Greg, who is an atheist."

Friday, September 08, 2006

Brad Pitt comes out for Polygamy, Incest

BREITBART.COM - Brangelina to Marry When Everybody Can: "Brad Pitt, ever the social activist, says he won't be marrying Angelina Jolie until the restrictions on who can marry whom are dropped.

'Angie and I will consider tying the knot when everyone else in the country who wants to be married is legally able,' the 42-year-old actor reveals in Esquire magazine's October issue, on newsstands Sept. 19."

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Attention Marion Jones - GEN - Stem cells could be next generation of sports doping: "For athletes, stem cells have much more than the potential to cure disease and save lives -- they may be able to heal injuries, boost strength and endurance, and provide a lasting edge over the competition.

If it sounds like stem cells are next frontier for doping in sports, it's because they very well may be."

Sunday, September 03, 2006

An Inconvenient Truth: Ban the Sun

FuturePundit: Sun Energy Output At Over 1,000 Year Peak: "Sami Solanki, Professor at the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich Switzerland, says the Sun has been burning more brightly over the last 60 years than over the previous 1090 years."

MSM Tutoring -: "MAJOR FIGHTING in Afghanistan: 'Afghan and NATO forces killed more than 200 Taliban fighters in a major operation in southern Afghanistan, NATO said Sunday.'

Alternative MSM-style headline: 'Over 200 killed in renewed Afghan violence.'"

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Evolution and it's discontents.

OpinionJournal - Best of the Web Today: "Still, we got a kick out of what the Washington Post's Lisa de Moraes called 'the stunning news . . . that CBS would divide contestants on the next 'Survivor' into four tribes based on race.'

Especially amusing is this reaction, reported by the Associated Press:

'The idea of having a battle of the races is preposterous,' [New York] City Councilman John Liu said Thursday. 'How could anybody be so desperate for ratings?' . . .

Liu, who is Asian-American, said he was launching a campaign urging CBS to pull the show because it could encourage racial division and promote negative typecasts. He and a coalition of officials, including the council's black, Latino and Asian caucus, planned to rally at City Hall on Friday.

So 'the council's black, Latino and Asian caucus' is upset over a plan to divide people up by race? Talk about the pot calling the kettle African-American!"

I often make the point with students that if evolution is true and there is no God, then racism is not just morally neutral, but actually a key part of the evolution of the species.

I've always subscribed to the Judeo-Christian notion that, unlike other animals, humans are created in God's image and therefore equal in dignity regardless of race. But that's just me.

Media Bias 101 - (UPDATED) AP takes the hatchet to Rumsfeld speech: "Interesting little side by side here. Donald Rumsfeld gave a speech to the American Legion. You can read it here. Robert Burns from AP reported on the speech. You can read it here. Below are some comparisons from the story and the speech."

Friday, September 01, 2006

Diversity at Dartmouth

Power Line: Dissidents at Dartmouth: "And so a pattern emerges at Dartmouth, one interminably replicated on other campuses: The academic establishment wants to consolidate its authority and exclude those who might deviate from the party line. But in a democracy, the results are not supposed to be foreordained. "
If only they celebrated diversity.

WMD in Iraq

Pajamas Media: EXCLUSIVE Secret Iraq WMD Report -- Partially Unclassified & Available @ PJM: "For those keeping score, this most recent discovery raises the total number of chemical weapons found in Iraq since 2003 to more than 700."

Interesting Stuff