Sunday, July 21, 2013

Charity Begins in Your Own Back Pocket

Earlier this evening I stopped by the store to get something to drink. There was a man out front that hit me with the usual sob story. He had just lost his job. He was from out of town and had no family out here that could help him. He was entering some sort of homeless assistance program in the next few days, but was trying to raise up enough cash to get himself a cheap place to stay for the next couple of days.

You hear stories all the time about the guy that stands on the street corner with the "will work for food" sign and at the end of the day gets into his cadillac or bmw and drives home. I have never seen that happen myself, and I think that it a story that people tell themselves in order to make it easy to be heartless. Bad things happen to good people. Sometimes it is their fault, other times it is a result of mental illness or other factors less in their control.

Either way I would rather part with the $20 in my wallet a couple of times a year, and just hope that I am really helping someone out than be an closed off emotionally devoid asshole. Read the book. You know what Dad says about helping those that are less fortunate.

Friday, July 19, 2013

The Party of Small Government and Abortion Laws

The following is a reprint of an letter written to the newpaper The Oklahoman from Republican representative Doug Cox who is also a physician.

All of the new Oklahoma laws aimed at limiting abortion and contraception are great for the Republican family that lives in a gingerbread house with a two-car garage, two planned kids and a dog. In the real world, they are less than perfect.

As a practicing physician (who never has or will perform an abortion), I deal with the real world. In the real world, 15- and 16-year-olds get pregnant (sadly, 12-, 13- and 14-year-olds do also). In the real world, 62 percent of women ages 20 to 24 who give birth are unmarried. And in the world I work and live in, an unplanned pregnancy can throw up a real roadblock on a woman’s path to escaping the shackles of poverty.

Yet I cannot convince my Republican colleagues that one of the best ways to eliminate abortions is to ensure access to contraception. A recent attempt by my fellow lawmakers to prevent Medicaid dollars from covering the “morning after” pill is a case in point. Denying access to this important contraceptive is a sure way to increase legal and back-alley abortions. Moreover, such a law would discriminate against low-income women who depend on Medicaid for their health care.

Is my thinking too clouded by my experiences in the real world? Experiences like having a preacher, in the privacy of an exam room say, “Doc, you have heard me preach against abortion but now my 15-year-old daughter is pregnant, where can I send her?” Or maybe it was that 17-year-old foreign exchange student who said, “I really made a mistake last night. Can you prescribe a morning-after pill for me? If I return to my home country pregnant, life as I know it will be over.”

What happened to the Republican Party that felt that the government has no business being in an exam room, standing between me and my patient? Where did the party go that felt some decisions in a woman’s life should be made not by legislators and government, but rather by the women, her conscience, her doctor and her God?

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Treyvon thoughts

First off, anytime a human life is taken it is a tragedy.

Each of us are entitled to live our lives without fear or pain. This has been made out to be a complicated case, and it is not. If George Zimmerman had listened to the 911 dispatcher and not followed Trayvon Martin none of this would have happened.

The rest of the details are inconsequential. Now we have TWO lives that have been completely destroyed by two people that pushed things too far.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Your Meat is Beating You

Here at Texas H Christ we don't have a political or idiological agenda. I keep my personal beliefs to myself. Last time I shared my political and religious views with others I was nailed to a tree. Lesson learned. The purpose of this blog is to simply point out facts and make common sense observations. If having common sense brands me as having a leftist or liberal agenda then so be it. I ran across these the other day. Thought I would share. Oh yeah...I am not a vegetarian either. Get over yourself and pull up a chair.

Fact: American animals raised for meat eat more than 30 million pounds of antibiotics a year. Most supermarket meat today comes from operations that routinely feed animals low doses of antibiotics. This constant contact with drugs helps bacteria learn how to outsmart the meds, creating dangerous strains of hard-to-kill superbugs.

Fact: Each year, food animals raised in North Carolina alone ingest more antibiotics than the entire American public. About 80 percent of all antibiotics used in the U.S. go to nonorganic farm animals to help speed livestock growth and counteract filthy, stressful housing situations that debilitate the animals' immune systems. The lack of accountability for the meds in industrial farming might surprise you. While people head to the doctor for a professional evaluation and prescription, anyone can walk into a farm store and buy pounds of antibiotics. The Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act, or PAMTA, a proposed legislation in Congress, would end the dangerous practice of feeding drugs to healthy animals, saving the medicines for when an animal is actually acutely ill and needs them.

Fact: MRSA kills more people than AIDS, and it's in your meat. Forcing animals to eat drugs is creating a silent crisis in the U.S. A 2011 study published in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases took the gross-out factor to a whole new level. Researchers found that half of the U.S. supermarket meat sampled contained staph infection bacteria, including the hard-to-kill and potentially lethal MRSA. Turkey products were most likely to harbor staph bacteria, followed by pork and chicken products.

Fact: Prozac may have been part of your chicken's diet. Earlier in 2012, Johns Hopkins University study studied the feathers of imported chickens to figure out what the birds ingested before slaughter. They found traces of antidepressants, painkillers, banned antibiotics, and allergy medication. According to scientists, Prozac is sometimes used to offset anxiety common in factory farm conditions. (Stress can slow birds' growth, hurting profits.) Scientists also uncovered caffeine in about 50 percent of samples taken. Why? Caffeine keeps chickens awake so they can grow faster.

Fact: You could be eating animal worming medication. The U.S. Department of Agriculture discovered traces of harmful veterinary drugs and heavy metals in U.S. beef, including:
  • Ivermectin, an animal wormer that can cause neurological damage in humans.
  • Flunixin, a veterinary drug that can cause kidney damage, stomach, and colon ulcers, as well as blood in the stool of humans.
  • Penicillin, a drug that can cause life-threatening reactions in people who are allergic to it.
  • Arsenic, a known carcinogen that is allowed in some nonorganic animal feeding operations. (It is commonly fed to chickens, and chicken litter, or feces, is sometimes fed to feedlot cattle -- and the majority of supermarket and fast-food beef in this country comes from feedlot operations.)
  • Copper, an essential element we need for our survival but that's harmful when too much accumulates in our bodies.
Fact: Certain beef is more likely to harbor deadly E. coli germs. It's natural for cows to eat grass, but not grains. Still, most cows today are raised in feedlots, where they chomp down lots of grain to speed growth. This changes the natural chemistry in a cow's gut, making it easier for potentially deadly E. coli O157:H7 strain to survive.

Fact: Supermarket chicken could be fueling urinary tract infections. Investigating disease-causing bacteria on grocery store meat and comparing it to urine samples of women diagnosed with UTIs, researchers found that in 71 percent of cases, the E. coli bacteria collected from women with UTIs matched the strain detected on supermarket chicken. "People are eating a lot more chicken because it's often perceived as healthier," says Amy Manges, PhD, associate professor in the department of epidemiology, biostatistics and occupational health at McGill University in Montreal. "But what people don't realize is that chicken is pretty heavily contaminated with bacteria in general, and those bacteria tend to be drug resistant."
Fact: All the antibiotics that are pumped into cattle, and other modern-day farming practices, lead to tough, chewy steaks, says Sarah Klein, a senior attorney in the food-safety program at Center for Science in the Public Interest. So, increasingly, slaughterhouses have adopted the process of mechanically tenderizing steaks and other high-quality cuts of beef. Doing so involves driving blades and needles into steak -- which in turn, drive any bacteria living on the surface of a steak deep into the flesh. When you get an undercooked steak, for instance, if you like to order yours rare or medium, all that bacteria inside the meat is still alive, whereas before, it would have been seared off when the outside was cooked, she says. More than half of the 82 outbreaks linked to steak in the past ten years can be linked to E. coli, a bacterium that's usually only found on the exterior of whole cuts of meat.

Fact: Antibiotics are used on conventional farms to make animals grow faster. And emerging research suggests antibiotics could be making us fatter, too, disrupting the natural balance of beneficial gut bacteria. "For many years now, farmers have known that antibiotics are great at producing heavier cows for market," explains Jan Blustein, MD, PhD, professor of population health and medicine at NYU School of Medicine. "While we need more research to confirm our findings, this carefully conducted study suggests that antibiotics influence weight gain in humans, especially children,

Friday, June 28, 2013

They Took Our Jobs.....and other myths about illegal immigration.

Most of the complaints made by anti-immigration activists regarding the status of illegal immigrants from Mexico to the United States are based on exaggeration, misconception, myths and outright lies. As with most things, many of the complaints are real for a very small number of illegal immigrants, but by and large, they do not apply to most of the illegal immigration into this country.

Further, those who oppose illegal immigration tend to focus their rhetoric on emotional issues, such as claims that illegal immigrants are "taking our jobs" and "threatening our security;" but the evidence they provide in favor of these claims is very scanty, and they only seem to have one "solution" of the problem, viz., "kick the wetbacks out," which if there were no other objections to it would cause major damage to the U.S. economy.

Illegal immigrants don’t pay taxes

  • All immigrants pay taxes whether they are illegal or not. They pay them in the form of property tax - directly if they own a home, or indirectly if they rent; sales tax on all the goods they buy, and income tax at Federal, State and local level.
  • Since illegal immigrants often have fake documents, including fake Social Security numbers, the money they pay into the system is money that will never be withdrawn. The amount in question is evidenced by the Social Security Administration’s “suspense file” (taxes that cannot be matched to workers’ names and Social Security numbers), which grew $20 billion between 1990 and 1998.

Legal immigrants come here to get "welfare"

  • Immigrants come to work and to reunite with family members.
  • Immigrant labor-force participation is consistently higher than native-born, and immigrant workers make up a larger share of the U.S. labor force (12.4%) than they do the U.S. population (11.5%). Moreover, the ratio between immigrant use of public benefits and the amount of taxes they pay is consistently favorable to the U.S., unless the “study” was undertaken by an anti-immigrant group. In one estimate, immigrants earn about $240 billion a year, pay about $90 billion a year in taxes, and use about $5 billion in public benefits. In another cut of the data, immigrant tax payments total $20 to $30 billion more than the amount of government services they use.
  • Since the welfare reform of 1996, when limits were implemented cutting off benefits to two years consecutively or five years cumulatively, this is a bogus accusation.
  • To immigrate into the US, you must have a sponsor (generally the family member, such as the spouse, bringing you into the country) who will testify that he or she has enough money to support you, if you are unable to support yourself, or if you lose your job. This agreement means that within the first 5 years of living in the US, you cannot take welfare. Your family member will be assessed a penalty if you demand it.  Immigrants send all their money back to their home countries
  • In addition to the consumer spending of immigrant households, immigrants and their businesses contribute $162 billion in tax revenue to U.S. federal, state, and local governments. While it is true that immigrants remit billions of dollars a year to their home countries, this is one of the most targeted and effective forms of direct foreign investment.

 THEY TOOK OUR JERBS! Immigrants take jobs and opportunity away from Americans

  • The largest wave of immigration to the U.S. since the early 1900s coincided with the lowest national unemployment rate and fastest economic growth. Immigrant entrepreneurs create jobs for U.S. and foreign workers, and foreign-born students allow many U.S. graduate programs to keep their doors open. While there has been no comprehensive study done of immigrant-owned businesses, we have countless examples: in Silicon Valley, companies begun by Chinese and Indian immigrants generated more than $19.5 billion in sales and nearly 73,000 jobs in 2000.
  • Illegal immigrants, as well as legal immigrants with little job skills or language skills often take the work seen by most Americans as "beneath them." Janitorial services, crop pickers and garbage collectors need workers, and they do not find them from high-school-educated, English-speaking citizens. As a demonstration of this fact, in Georgia, a 2011 crackdown on illegal immigrants caused many to be deported and more to flee the state. This caused a shortage of labor on the state's farms, indicating that illegal immigrants in that state do not compete very much with Americans for jobs.

Immigrants are a drain on the U.S. economy

  • During the 1990s, half of all new workers were foreign-born, filling gaps left by native-born workers in both the high- and low-skill ends of the spectrum.
  • Immigrants fill jobs in key sectors, start their own businesses, and contribute to a thriving economy. The net benefit of immigration to the U.S. is nearly $10 billion annually. As Alan Greenspan points out, 70% of immigrants arrive in prime working age.
  • Due to welfare reform, legal immigrants are severely restricted from accessing public benefits, and illegal immigrants are even further precluded from anything other than emergency services. Anti-immigrant groups skew these figures by including programs used by U.S. citizen children of immigrants in their definition of immigrant welfare use, among other tactics. transplanted into our workforce and will contribute $500 billion toward our social security system over the next 20 years.

Immigrants don’t want to learn English or become Americans

  • Within ten years of arrival, more than 75% of immigrants speak English well; moreover, demand for English classes at the adult level far exceeds supply. Greater than 33% of immigrants are naturalized citizens; given increased immigration in the 1990s, this figure will rise as more legal permanent residents become eligible for naturalization in the coming years. The number of immigrants naturalizing spiked sharply after two events: enactment of immigration and welfare reform laws in 1996, and the terrorist attacks in 2001.

Most immigrants cross the border illegally

  • Around 75% have legal permanent (immigrant) visas; of the 25% that are here illegally, 40% overstayed temporary (nonimmigrant) visas.
  • Prior to modern immigration laws, and even prior to the existence of the United States, Europeans came to the continent without any paperwork whatsoever.

Weak U.S. border enforcement has led to high levels of illegal immigration

  • From 1986 to 1998, the Border Patrol’s budget increased sixfold and the number of agents stationed on our southwest border doubled to 8,500. The Border Patrol also toughened its enforcement strategy, heavily fortifying typical urban entry points and pushing migrants into dangerous desert areas, in hopes of deterring crossings. Instead, the illegal immigrant population doubled in that period, to 8 million - despite the legalization of nearly 3 million immigrants after the enactment of the Immigration Reform and Control Act in 1986. Insufficient legal avenues for immigrants to enter the U.S., compared with the number of jobs available to them, have created this current conundrum.

The war on terrorism can be won through immigration restrictions

  • No security expert since September 11, 2001 has said that restrictive immigration measures would have prevented the terrorist attacks—instead, the key is good use of good intelligence. Most of the 9/11 hijackers were here on legal tourist or student visas (but some did overstay on those). Since 9/11, the myriad of measures targeting immigrants in the name of national security have netted no terrorism prosecutions. In fact, several of these measures could have the opposite effect and actually make us less safe, as targeted communities of immigrants are afraid to come forward with information.
  •  Illegal immigrants are the source of many communicable diseases
  • Anti-immigrant advocates including Lou Dobbs have claimed that Mexican border-crossers are the source of a rampant increase in leprosy. CDC and Department for Health and Human Services statistics do not bear this myth out.

Illegal immigrants cause crime

  • Whilst a common cry of the anti immigration brigade - and the font of endless anecdotal "evidence" - the facts don't support this.

The government is not enforcing existing immigration laws

  • By September 2011, Barack Obama has exceeded the number of removals from the United States during the entire Bush Administration. Simply put, it would be difficult, if not impossible, for the government to round up and deport every illegal immigrant. The agency responsible for doing so, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), has limited resources (finances, officers, jail spaces etc.) and must prioritize how they are spent (as well as figuring out how to spend resources on enforcing US Customs laws). Simply put, a migrant farm laborer's family probably is not as high on ICE's priority list for deportation as as a major drug trafficker might be. Furthermore, aliens involved in deportation proceedings are entitled to due process regardless of their status in the United States.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Government Spends 2 Million On Donuts

In 2012 our House of Representatives spent 2 million dollars on stuffing their fat faces with donuts, bagels, and other pastries while children go to sleep every night in this country with empty bellies. I cannot even imagine the amount of pastries 2 million dollars would purchase. I spend $10 at the donut shop and I am walking out of there with enough refined sugar to put myself in a diabetic coma.

Here is a list of the worst offenders.

John Boehner R $ 64,000
Nancy Pelosi D $ 61,000
Steny Hoyer D $ 52,000

The biggest "fat" cat was Kevin McCarthy R $ 95,000. He also spent an additional $4000 on bottled water. Mr. McCarthy declined to comment when questioned about the wasteful spending

I think if I was spending more money on donuts than most Americans make in a year I would decline to comment too.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

The FBI Getting All Up in Your Business

 In a surprising turn of events in the governements rape of privacy FBI Director Robert Mueller testified on Wednesday that his agency has used drones to conduct surveillance within the United States. Once again they are assuring us that they are doing it on a very limited basis and they are only listening to a few isolated individuals and in insolated incidents.

Mueller said the FBI was working on an operational policy for drone use.“We are in the initial stages of doing that, and I will tell you that our footprint is very small,” Mueller said. “We are exploring not only the use, but the necessary guidelines for that use.”

It’s the definition of “proper use” that is up in the air when it comes to drones and law enforcement.

There doesn’t seem to be a clear-cut answer, despite the Fourth Amendment’s message, partly because of the technology wrapped up inside higher-tech police drones. Some drones can not only see clearly into your backyard, but can also theoretically listen (in some circumstances) and take thermal-sensitive pictures. More sophisticated drones can intercept electronic communications, track GPS information, and use facial recognition technology.

I can hear the people now saying,"Well if your not doing anything wrong why should you be concerned?"  When the people that have the technology to invade your privacy are the same ones that are in charge of defining who is a "terrorist" I would be very concerned.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Undiscussed Amendments

People love to talk about their 1st and 2nd amendment rights. Both very important, but there are other amendments to the constitution. One that sticks out in my mind right now given the current things going on with government surveillance is the 4th Amendment.

The 4th Amendment is as follows:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but on probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the person or things to be seized.

The ironic thing about the revelation that the US government is spying on you is that you gave them the right to do so with The Patriot Act. Politicians said it will make you safer and no one read the fine print.They tell us what they are, and are not using it worries. However, the real point is what they could use it for isn't it?

While you are worried about gun control and free speech they took the entire game right under your noses. It is called misdirection. When someone wants to do something with their right hand they don't want you to see then they do something else with the left hand to distract you. worked real well here. Much like the attendees at a magic show everyone is left scratching their heads. 

I think Benjamin Franklin said it best, "Those who would give up essential liberties to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty of safety."

Monday, June 17, 2013

Internet Comments

As the Son of God I have alot of time on my hands. Being a supernatural being means that I don't have to eat, sleep, or shit. It frees up alot of time, you would be probably be surprised how much. I spend alot of time on the internet reading the news feeds. If you really want to get an insight into the pulse of the people skip the news and go straight to the comments. It is as if the door of this countries collective trailer parks just spread wide to allow the tentacles of the world wide web to give a voice to the varieties of people that really should not be speaking aloud.

The following list is the topics that seem to really bring out the nutjobs:
  • Gun Control
  • Anything Gay
  • Border Control/Immigration
  • North Korea
The crap that people say makes you wonder. Is this really how people think or is this just false bravado brought about by the anonymity offered by the internet? Are people really this unfeeling or are these just attempts to provoke stupid little intenet flame wars? You would think that this kind of connectivity offered by Facespace, Mybook, and Twatter would mean that people would have a better understanding of other peoples values and cultures. It seems to me that we have all become more closed off. In the past if you wanted to maintain a relationship with someone you had to leave the house, or pick up the phone. Now you can have entire relationships without even  having to get out of your underwear.