Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The Constitution Or Good Ideas?

via FrontPageMag;
The Constitution Or Good Ideas?
April 30, 2014 by  
Let me run through a few good ideas. I think it’s a good idea for children to eat healthful, wholesome foods. In the raising of our daughter, before-dinner treats were fresh vegetables, and after-dinner treats were mostly fruits.
I arrive at my gym sometime between 4 a.m. and 5 a.m., at least four times a week, to lift weights and use the treadmill. During the warmer months, the treadmill is substituted by a weekly total of 40 to 60 miles on my bike. My exercise regimen is a good idea. Another good idea is to wear a bike helmet while bike riding and wear a seat belt when driving my car. Among many other good ideas is the enjoyment of two, maybe three, glasses of wine with each evening meal.
You say, “So what, Williams? What’s your point?” There’s no question that all of those actions, with the possible exception of the last, are indeed good ideas. As evidence that my exercise regimen is a good idea, my doctors tell me that at 78 years of age, I’m in better health and conditioning than most of their male patients many years my junior. My question to you is whether these commonly agreed-upon good ideas should become the law of the land. To be more explicit, should Congress enact a law requiring every able-bodied American to lift weights four times a week and bike 40 to 60 miles each week? Just look at all the benefits of such a law. Americans would be healthier, and that would mean lower health care costs. People would have a longer working life. Men would have the strength to protect their women and children folk from thugs. In a word, there would be no downside to the fitter population that would come from a congressional law mandating physical fitness programs. We might title such a law the “Improving American Health Act.” The law would impose fines and penalties on any able-bodied person not found to be in compliance. What congressman would have the callousness to vote against such a beneficial measure?

Needless to say, there would be attacks against the Improving American Health Act, launched mostly by libertarians, conservatives and some Republicans.
These people would argue that Congress has no constitutional authority to enact such a liberty-intrusive law. Their arguments would be on weak grounds. Our Constitution’s Article 1, Section 8 says, “The Congress shall have Power To … provide for the … general Welfare of the United States.” Our Constitution further empowers Congress to enact the Improving American Health Act by its Article 1, Section 3 — sometimes referred to as the commerce clause — which grants Congress the power “To regulate Commerce … among the several States.” After all, good health lends itself to more efficient interstate commerce and a larger gross domestic product. Sick Americans adversely affect interstate commerce and are a burden on economic activity.
I have no doubt that people who don’t want to see a healthier America — again, mostly libertarians, conservatives and Republicans — will bring suit before the U.S. Supreme Court, arguing that Congress has no such authority under either the general welfare clause or the commerce clause. Would you prefer that Chief Justice John Roberts Jr., speaking for a majority, concur by saying, “This court is guided by the U.S. Constitution, and we find no constitutional authority for the Improving American Health Act, despite Congress’ nonsense claims alleging authority under the general welfare and commerce clauses”?
Or would you prefer that Justice Roberts, speaking for the majority, engage in mental contortions in which he agrees that forcing people to exercise exceeds congressional authority under both the commerce clause and the general welfare clause but says the Improving American Health Act is indeed constitutional under Congress’ taxing authority?
My bottom line question is: Should we be ruled by what are seen as good ideas or by what’s permissible by the U.S. Constitution?
Thank You Prof Williams and Front Page Mag.

"Social Justice" Defined: Why You Don't Want It or Anything To Do With It.

via Discover The Networks;
Social Justice


"Social Justice" is a code phrase of the left, which believes that such justice can only be achieved by the recognition that capitalism and the economic inequality it produces must be replaced by a "classless" society wherein all differences in wealth and property have been eliminated. The “Social Justice Movement” (quotation marks are necessary because its version of “justice” is political rather than lexical) is quintessentially deterministic, believing as a core principle that people are what they are because they were born into an inflexible social order.

The "Social Justice Movement" is at war with classical liberalism, which defines equality as the equality of all individuals before the law, irrespective of "class" or any other collective identity. In modern terms, the conflict between these two worldviews is similar to the conflict between “equality of opportunity” and “equality of outcome,” which can only be guaranteed and enforced by some structure of authority.

The "Social Justice Movement" endorses socialism as a means of redressing the alleged evils of capitalism and producing a programmatic equality that it acknowledges will be purchased at the price of individual liberty and require the manufacture of what totalitarian governments have called “the New Man.”

The RESOURCES column located on the right side of this page contains links to articles, essays, books, and videos that explore:

  • the tenets, worldview, and objectives of the "Social Justice Movement"; and
  • how the tenets of the "Social Justice Movement" are taught to America's schoolchildren. 
Here's more from Discover The Networks Resources page;

Social Justice: Code for Communism
By Barry Loberfeld
February 27, 2004

Social Justice: Not What You Think It Is
By Michael Novak
December 29, 2009

Affirmative Action, Negative Justice
By Barry Loberfeld
September 22, 2003

What Is Social Justice?
By Samuel Gregg
April 1, 2013

Social Justice Theory: A Solution in Search of a Problem
By David Rose
April 1, 2013

Defining Social Justice
By Michael Novak
December 2000

The Mysticism of "Social Justice"
By Thomas Sowell
June 27, 2012

Social Justice Is the State
By Eric Mack
April 1, 2013
Social Justice
By Dennis Prager

What Is Social Justice?
By Jonah Goldberg

Thank You Discover The Networks.

Who Is The New HHS Secretary, Sylvia Mathews Burwell?

DiscoverTheNetworks has;
Sylvia Mathews Burwell

Sylvia Mathews Burwell was born to Greek-American parents in June 1965 in Hinton, West Virginia, where she was raised. Whileearning a bachelor's degree in government from Harvard University during the 1980s, she interned for Rep. Nick Rahall, a West Virginia Democrat. Burwell subsequently worked for the 1988 presidential campaign of Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis, and earned a second bachelor's degree in philosophy, politics and economics from Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes Scholar.

From 1990-92 Burwell was an associate at McKinsey & Company, a global management consulting firm. She worked for Bill Clinton's presidential campaign in 1992, and was named manager of his White House transition team after the election that November.

From 1993-95 Burwell served as staff director for Robert Rubin, Assistant to the President for Economic Policy. In 1993 she helpedRubin get the newly created National Economic Council up and running. And when Rubin was appointed U.S. Treasury Secretary in 1995, Burwell became his chief of staff and held that post for two years.

In 1995 Burwell was called to testify before a Senate committee inestigating whether First Lady Hillary Clinton may have instructed White House officials to remove potentially incriminating documents from the office of her close friend and former law partner Vince Foster, shortly after the latter had been found dead—apparently of suicide—in a Virginia park on July 20, 1993. At issue was the fact that Foster, in the months prior to his death, had handled many sensitive political and personal affairs for the Clintons—including the couple's controversial Whitewater land venture, for which 15 Clinton associates were ultimately convicted of more than 40 separate crimes. In her testimony, Mathews recalled that: (a) Secret Service personnel did in fact give her a special bag of garbage (from Foster's office) containing classified and sensitive papers; (b) she then asked White House counsel Bernard Nussbaum for his advice on what to do with the documents; and (c) Nussbaum instructed her to return the bag, unexamined, to the Secret Service so that its contents could be destroyed.

In 1997-98 Burwell served as one of President Clinton's two deputy chiefs of staff, the other being future Center for American Progress founder John Podesta. Burwell and Podesta both worked under chief of staff Erskine Bowles.

From 1998-2001, Burwell was deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget, under director Jack Lew. During that time period, then-Washington Post reporter John Harris described Burwell as “a liberal who favors spending on social programs for the disadvantaged.”

During her eight years with the Clinton administration, Burwell developed a deep affinity for the President. As she later told theSeattle Times: “I made a decision that I believed, and do to this day, that while President Clinton made a mistake [vis à vis the Monica Lewinsky sexual scandal], that the contributions he made to this country and the important changes are so profound that I would continue to serve, and serve with my head held high.”

After President Clinton left office, Burwell joined the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation where she served as executive vice president from 2001-02, chief operating officer from 2002-06, and president of the foundation's Global Development Program from 2006-11.

In January 2012 Burwell was named president of the Walmart Foundation, a postition she held until April 2013 when she becamedirector of the Office of Management and Budget under President Barack Obama.

On April 11, 2014, Obama nominated Burwell to succeed the recently resigned Kathleen Sebelius as U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services.

In addition to her aforementioned governmental and philanthropic pursuits, Burwell over the years has also been a Board of Directors member of the Council on Foreign Relations; a Board member of the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa; an Advisory Board member with the Next Generation Initiative and the Peter G. Peterson Foundation; a Professional Advisory Board member of the ALS Evergreen Chapter; a member of the Aspen Strategy Group, the Trilateral Commission, and the Nike Foundation Advisory Group; and a director of both MetLife Inc. and the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company (from early 2004 through early 2013).

Thank You Discover The Networks.

And Thank You Front Page Mag and Mr Horowitz.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

UCSF IS #2 of: The Top 10 Biomedical Research Institutions

The Top 10 Biomedical Research Institutions
February 11, 2014

Academic research institutions play a crucial role in the drug development process, especially on the preclinical research and drug discovery side, as Big Pharma companies are increasingly cutting back their R&D spending. While many of the research institutions featured here are still doing plenty of basic science research, interest seems to be growing among these universities in repurposing existing drugs or those that never made it into the marketplace because of safety issues.

We've taken a look at some of the best research institutions in the U.S. and ranked by them by their level of funding from the National Institutes of Health, the largest funder of biomedical research in the world. The report highlights some of the important drug discovery research coming out of these universities that FierceBiotech Research covered in 2013, but it is by no means a comprehensive look at every research initiative at these institutions.

Last year, funding for biomedical research at these institutions took a hit from sequestration on top of years of budget cuts to the NIH. Seven out of 10 of those on our list lost funding in fiscal 2013 compared to the same period in 2012. Stanford University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of California, San Francisco, were the only three among the top 10 to get a slight bump in NIH funding from 2012 to 2013. A 2014 spending bill passed in January will restore $1 billion to the NIH budget compared to fiscal year 2013 postsequester, but that is still below presequester funding levels.

Just to clarify--we haven't used any metrics other than NIH funding levels to rank these institutions. Thus, this list shouldn't be interpreted as a ranking of institutions providing the best research or those producing the most breakthroughs. To see where we got our data, check out NIH's searchable awards database.

Check out the list, and as always, feel free to drop me a line to let me know what you think. And if you're a researcher with some news to share, we'd like to hear it.
-- Emily Mullin (email | Twitter)

Thank You FierceBiotechResearch and Ms Mullin.