Saturday, March 28, 2009

Mozart Was a Red

To all my friends still enamored with Ayn Rand ;-)

Friday, March 27, 2009

Mark Knopfler & Emmylou Harris - Born to Run

End the barbarity

Raised S.B. No. 994, AN ACT CONCERNING LEGHOLD TRAPS, has made it out of committee. Anyone interested in ending the barbaric practice should contact their Reps and Senators now. Here is a handy list of members of the Environment Committee. Thanks Wonderwoman!

From the joint favorable report:


To prevent needless animal suffering caused by leghold and body crushing traps.


Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) opposes this bill as it would be detrimental to wildlife management in the state. DEP feels these traps are the most effective tool available to control and prevent damage caused by coyotes and beavers. Currently Connecticut has strict laws and regulations which regulate the use of foothold and conibear traps which include when and where such traps can be used and they feel more restrictions will not prevent the illegal use of these traps. DEP testimony states that regulated trapping is essential to the balance between wildlife and humans.

Department of Agriculture opposes this bill as they feel conibear traps are an effective way to trap beavers and eliminate flooding problems caused by beaver dam. Where there may be alternatives to conibear traps (i.e. “suitcase-type, live traps), the alternatives are costly and dangerous to the humans setting them. When addressing coyote problems leghold traps are the only effective way to trap them, coyote are abundant and cause safety and public health problems such as rabies transmission and tick borne disease. Banning the use of these traps would take away farmers and trappers most effective tools.


ASPCA supports this bill as they can maim and/or kill humans, companion animals and non-targeted wildlife. The ASPCA supplied a partial list of the 85+ page list of non-target species, companion animals and humans trapped in leghold traps, of the 15 incidents reported 8 of the “victims” died as a direct result of the injuries inflicted by the trap.

The Humane Society of the United States supports this bill as these traps cause needless suffering to the trapped animals. Not only are the animals subject to physical damage ranging from bone fractures to hemorrhage, but they are also subject to physiological stress because in many cases death is not immediate. Conibear (submersion traps) are inhumane as death is caused by drowning. They induce panic and there is a prolonged period until unconsciousness. Testimony submitted indicates that body-crushing traps which are designed to kill the animal by snapping shut on the animal's spinal column are not always effective as it is impossible to control the size, position and direction of the animal entering the trap. They state that animals often endure prolonged suffering as they are not always killed by the clamping force of the trap. The Humane Society feels these are cruel trapping practices. Further the Humane Society states there are non-lethal means of trapping animals whether they be coyote, beaver or nuisance wildlife.

Skip Hilliker, licensed Nuisance Wildlife Control Operator supports this bill as he feels these traps are “grossly inhumane.” He states that he has been trapping in Connecticut for the past 50 years and in 1985 switched to live catch for trapping as trappers have humane alternatives available to them. He states that even with current modifications to the leghold and padded traps the animals still suffer unnecessary pain and suffering as it is impossible for a trapper to guarantee an instant death.

Michael Broderick, D.V.M., supports this bill as he has seen the effects of these traps. He states leghold traps cause horrific injuries and animals endure excruciating pain as a result of being caught in them. He states that leghold traps kill and maim non-targeted species included endangered species and domestic pets. He believes it would be “immoral not to ban this devise from our humane minded state.”

Kimberly McClure Brinton D.V.M. supports this bill and feels these traps are cruel and cause unnecessary suffering.

Gail Petras, City of Middletown Animal Control Officer supports this bill as she has personally tended to incidents involving non-targeted animals. In one case the trap was set illegally in a residential neighborhood. She further states that she has seen a skunk and coyote with leghold traps stuck on them. She feels that these animals will eventually need to be euthanized. She also states these incidents are acts of irresponsible people and the animals should not be subject to unnecessary suffering.

Kathy Grasso, Wildlife Rehabilitator supports this bill. Ms. Grasso states she has witnessed firsthand pain and suffering caused by leghold traps. She cared for a Great Horned Owl that was not the intended target of the leghold trap. The owl died as a result of the injury incurred by the leghold trap. She states that many non-targeted species become victims of leghold traps and feels they are inhumane.

[more at the link]

Monday, March 16, 2009

Priest’s Video Contradicts Police Report

Father James Manship released video footage Thursday that contradicts an East Haven police report justifying his arrest.
Christine Stuart

Update: Charges dropped against Father Manship

Ron Paul bumpersticker? You might be a terrorist!

Red flags outlined in the document include political bumper stickers such as those for U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, talk of conspiracy theories such as the plan for a mega-highway from Canada to Mexico and possession of subversive literature.

I wonder what they mean by that? On the Duty of Civil Disobedience by Thoreau? No Treason by Lysander Spooner? The writings of Albert Jay Nock or Frank Chodorov? What could they possibly mean...??

Brings to mind the line by former Supreme Court Justice Hugo Black, "If it's printed on paper it's legal, I don't even have to look at it."
Glenn Reynolds

Update: State retracts report amid growing backlash

Missouri Homeland Security wouldn't recognize a jihadist if he walked up and bit them in the rear. But little old ladies praying the rosary at an abortion clinic are a threat.

Some things I miss about Oklahoma

I lived in Oklahoma for awhile. There are some things about the place that are unique. :)

Doug Ross

Sunday, March 15, 2009

HR 875 - The Federal Take-Over of Food Regulation

Some of the requirements set forth within H.R. 875 include:

- Designating FSA as sole regulator of food safety rather than the individual states, including granting FSA the power to implement and administer a “national system for regular unannounced inspection of food establishments” under its own terms.
- Reclassifying all farms as “food production facilities”, ensuring they come under the regulatory and inspection protocols of FSA as well as enforcing compliance with whatever FSA deems as appropriate food safety requirements.
- Requiring farmers to comply with FSA-established “minimum standards” for farming practices, including requiring them to establish Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) plans and other written documentation as determined and mandated by FSA.
- Granting FSA the power to arrogate “preventative process controls to reduce adulteration of food” as it deems fit.
- Instituting FSA as food safety law enforcement, allowing it to assess civil penalties and fines for violation of any and all FSA safety laws up to $1 million for each violation. Collected fines would become unappropriated slush funds to be used however FSA deems fit in order to “carry out enforcement activities under the food safety law”.

The burdensome requirements the bill imposes on small farms and the intrusive federal control it creates over small farm operations threaten the future viability of sustainable agriculture and the local food movement. HR 875 has been assigned to both the House Committee on Energy and Commerce and the House Committee on Agriculture. It needs to be stopped. Anyone who values freedom of food choice and the rights and independence of small farmers should contact their elected representatives and the members of the two committees to ask that they oppose HR 875. Updates on the status of this bill will be provided on this site.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

First, they attacked religious liberty. Now they've taken away your right to a public hearing!

From my email:

Judiciary Committee Co-Chairs Rep. Michael Lawlor (D-East Haven) and Sen. Andrew McDonald (D-Stamford) have abruptly cancelled tomorrow's public hearing on R.B. 1098, the bill targeting the Catholic Church. That the other members of the Committee were not consulted about the cancellation highlights the hypocrisy of Lawlor and McDonald, given their claim that R.B. 1098 was about transparency and accountability. The cancellation is also a huge act of disrespect to the thousands who, on very short notice, arranged for buses and planned to take the day off from work in order to testify against the bill.

WE STILL NEED ALL OF YOU AT THE STATE CAPITOL TOMORROW, WEDNESDAY, MARCH 11TH! The Legislators who introduced this bill and cancelled the public hearing will not get away with this. WE WILL BE HEARD!

From 10:00 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. Room 1A at the Legislative Office Building will be the Family Institute of Connecticut's religious liberty headquarters. Please stop by to pick up packets of information about R.B. 1098, the legislature, and what you can do to turn the tide for faith and family in Connecticut. (Click on our homepage for parking and directions.)

From 12:00 p.m. until 1:30 p.m. there will be a Rally Against R.B. 1098 on the North Steps of the Capitol (210 Capitol Avenue in Hartford). The Rally is sponsored by the Catholic Church and will include speeches by the state's Catholic bishops. Family Institute's members of every faith are also encouraged to attend. Archbishop Leroy Bailey of First Cathedral, who is about to undergo surgery in North Carolina, called FIC executive director Peter Wolfgang today and strongly urged involvement by all the churches.

Also beginning at 12 p.m. the House and Senate Republicans will go ahead with their own informational hearing on R.B. 1098. An informational hearing has less official importance than a public hearing, but is still a valuable opportunity. Here is the message sent to members and staff of the GOP: "On behalf of House and Senate Republicans I would like to inform you that the House and Senate Republican Offices will be going forward with an informational hearing on SB 1098,AN ACT MODIFYING CORPORATE LAWS RELATING TO CERTAIN RELIGIOUS CORPORATIONS tomorrow starting at 12:00pm. The hearing will be held in room 2C and overflow rooms will be available. Sign up for the hearing will start at 9:30am in lobby of the Legislative Office Building. We will hear from Church officials first and then open it up for other public comment. We have invited and will be reaching out to anyone who has contacted us on this bill so we can let them know they will be heard on this issue tomorrow. We will also be inviting our Democrat colleagues to join us. We hope all Republican members can attend, especially our Republican Judiciary Committee members who were scheduled to be in attendance tomorrow anyway. If you have any questions please let us know. Thanks, Deb Hutton Chief Legal Counsel, House Republican Office, 860 240 8700."

At 7:30 p.m. tomorrow, Wednesday March 11th, FIC executive director Peter Wolfgang will debate the head of the Connecticut chapter of NARAL, the pro-abortion group, at the Lincoln Theater on the University of Hartford's campus. Doors open at 7 p.m. If you are still in Hartford, we would welcome your attendance at this event.

Dems in Full Retreat on Anti-Catholic Bill

Hundreds of residents, many of whom took a day off from work, were planning to crash the Legislative Office Building Wednesday. Both House Republican Leader Larry Cafero, R-Norwalk and Senate Republican Leader John McKinney, R-Fairfield, will be on hand to hear from the public. Cafero denounced the abrupt cancellation.

more at Chris Healy's blog

Damn! Fracas deferred.

Catholic Church Bill Gets Tabled By Chairmen

On the spot reporter Christine Stuart has the story.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Democratic Chairmen of the Judiciary Committee Declare Holy War Against Catholics

Chris Healy has the skinny

HARTFORD- Legislation proposed by the Democratic chairmen of the Judiciary Committee represents a brazen affront to the Roman Catholic Church and speaks to their desire to have the state dictate policy and procedure to people of faith, according to Republican State Party Chairman Chris Healy Monday.

"Democrats have crossed the line between church and state," said Healy. "Mike Lawlor and Andrew McDonald are now saying that the state knows best when it comes to being church member. Every citizen of Connecticut, no matter what faith, should be frightened by this legislation."

Committee bill 1098, which will be heard at a public hearing on Wednesday, would require that each Roman Catholic church’s governing body be comprised of between seven and 13 lay people and that the Archdiocese would have a solely advisory role. These lay councils would have complete control over the operations of each church or organization.

"Many people throughout Connecticut, including those who are not of the Catholic faith should be very concerned at this power play by the Democrats," said Healy. "There seems to be no limit to the arrogance of power by the Democrats. Now, with a $6 billion short fall, with people losing their jobs and homes, Rep. Lawlor wants to take over the Catholic Church over the management of a parish’s money. How can anyone who has spent the state of Connecticut near bankruptcy now support fiscal control over religious institutions?"

Healy said many people might think the legislative proposal is a mistake or simply a result of a request from a legislator who is doing it as a request from the constituent.

“This bill is a committee bill and would only see the light of day with the support and blessing of its leadership,” said Healy. “Now, it seems clear that Democratic Party in Connecticut believes the state of Connecticut should be deciding how are churches are run.”

Bill Donohue weighs in:

"Bishop Lori is correct to say that the bill 'is a thinly-veiled attempt to silence the Catholic Church on the important issues of the day, such as same-sex marriage,' '' Donohue said. "Indeed, it is payback: this brutal act of revenge by Lawlor and McDonald, two champions of gay marriage, is designed to muzzle the voice of the Catholic Church.''

Donohue added, "By singling out the Catholic Church - no other religion has been targeted - Lawlor and McDonald have demonstrated that they are ethically unfit to continue as lawmakers. They have evinced a bias so strong, and so malicious, that it compromises their ability to serve the public good. They should therefore by expelled by their colleagues.''

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Is it illegal to videotape police in Connecticut?

On the evening of his arrest, at around 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 19, Father Manship walked into My Country Store, a convenience store in East Haven run by Ecuadorians. Inside, the police were removing over 60 expired license plates that had been hung as decorations in the store. The license plates were government property, the officers had said, and they were confiscating them.

Manship entered the shop, took out a digital camera, and began videotaping the East Haven police officers who were removing license plates from a wall in the rear of the store.

The officers immediately ordered Manship to stop videotaping, seized his camera and put him under arrest, according to Manship. Within minutes of his arrival, everyone in the store fell silent as Father Manship was led out in handcuffs. He was charged with interfering with a police officer and creating a public disturbance....

....After the police arrested the priest, they noticed that the store was equipped with security cameras. Elio Cruz, a leader in New Haven’s Virgen Del Cisne Ecuadorian community, was in the store that night. “When [the police officers] realized there was videotaping from My Country Store, they went crazy,” Cruz recalled later. “They said it was illegal and they tried to grab the computer.”

What is up with the East Haven Police Department??

Christine Stuart

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Obama puts the chill on Geithner

This is cold. Check how Obama treats Little Timmy Geithner at about 6:15 into this video clip. Ouch.

MulhollandDrive at Politics for Pros

Santiago Jimenez and his Tex-Mex conjunto