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October 03, 2005

Commentaries

Joseph Farah
Anatomy of a scientific study

So often, news reports pick up on these "research papers" as if they have some real weight, credibility and reflect a genuine and sincere search for truth. And, so often, we learn they are little more than opinion pieces by activists with an agenda.

Such is the case with Gregory Paul and his "academic" paper widely picked up by news media around the world.

It turns out Gregory Paul is not a "social scientist" at all. He is a free-lance dinosaur paleontologist and illustrator....

Paul makes presentations on the Ten Commandments, the rise of secular humanism and serves as "in-house dinosaur paleontologist" for the Baltimore secular humanists.

He has also written a futuristic book that describes the rise of immortal cyber-humans.

But, again, he's no social scientist – except in his own mind.

He's an activist with an agenda. And his activism doesn't end with promoting evolutionary theories and questioning God.


John Zmirak
The Rules of the Great American Race Game

The current flap over former Secretary of Education William Bennett’s remarks last week reveals just what a bizarre set of taboos Americans have imposed on themselves when it comes to race—and what a political booby trap leftists have managed to rig around the subject, ready to explode in a burst of career-destroying shrapnel at the slightest misstep. Yes, it was insensitive of Mr. Bennett to notice the fact that black Americans commit violent crimes in highly disproportionate numbers. It’s worth making a special effort not to incriminate the vast majority of law-abiding black citizens—many of whom grow up poor in broken homes, subjected to stronger temptations than those of us who grew up differently. Given the history of eugenics in the last century, one can understand a certain touchiness on the subject. But the ferocity with which liberals pounced on Bennett—so soon after accusing President Bush of racism for FEMA’s failure to (do black Mayor Ray Nagin’s job for him and) rescue black New Orleanians—betray a profound political cynicism, and a willingness to seize crassly (and selectively) upon human tragedy to make cheap rhetorical points.


Robert Novak
Criminalizing politics

Democrats were archetypal hards, determined to use the criminal process to remove from power so formidable an antagonist. Travis County District Attorney Ronnie Earle nearly flinched within the last month, but relentless determination to use the criminal process against DeLay moved Earle.

In today's polarized climate, both parties have contributed to the criminalization of politics. But Democrats, losers in both elections and the world of ideas, have turned to using the criminal process over the last two decades. That means depicting DeLay not as a mere reactionary politician but the cause of national corruption. This resolve was furthered by the reckless DA in Texas and a retreat by House Republicans....

Earle's most notorious prosecution involved trumped up charges against Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison. When Hutchison won a 1993 special election to the Senate, I was advised by Austin's Democratic power brokers that she would never be elected to a full term in 1994 because she then would be under indictment. She was, but Earle's evidence was so insubstantial that the judge tossed it out of court....

That most of Earle's prosecutorial targets have been Democrats does not mean he is a straight shooter. A majority consisted of routine cases, but the big ones were tainted by politics. Earle lost a 1985 case against State Attorney General Jim Mattox, a political rival who accused the DA of using the case as a "stepping stone." His 1992 prosecution that drove Texas House Speaker Gib Lewis out of public life was viewed in political circles as a hit job influenced by Gov. Ann Richards. Earle investigated but never brought an indictment against Lt. Gov. Bob Bullock, who once called the prosecutor "a little boy playing with matches."

Posted by Danny Carlton at October 3, 2005 05:41 AM

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