Labor union activists often push back against right-to-work laws with the quip, “Right-to-work for less.” Their claim that right-to-work lowers wages has made many state legislators hesitant to vote for the anti-union laws. But new research from the conservative Heritage Foundation counters the claim that right-to-work decreases wages.
Right-to-work laws prohibit an employer from forcing employees to join a union or pay union dues.
“When living costs are fully taken into account, private-sector workers in RTW states enjoy real wages equivalent to those in non-RTW states,” Heritage Research Fellow James Sherk writes in an issue brief published Tuesday. “Policymakers considering RTW legislation may do so confident that it will have no negative impact on private-sector wages.”
A surface-level analysis may make it seem as if right-to-work leads to lower wages. States with right-to-work laws do have lower wages than non-right-to-work states, but right-to-work states also have lower costs of living. Virginia is the only right-to-work state with a higher cost of living than the national average.
After adjusting for differences in costs of living, private sector wages in right-to-work states and non-right-to-work states are virtually equal, according to Sherk’s analysis.
Here’s the map of right-to-work states:
I don’t really mind unions if they stay out of politics. My problem is when they get into politics and line themselves up with Democrats on issues like abortion and same-sex marriage. If the labor unions get involved in pushing for abortion and gay marriage, then it makes sense to pass these right to work laws. Every time a worker chooses not to join a union, it means that unions get less money to donate to Democrats at election time. Every little bit helps, and the workers can use the money better than any union executive can.
Anika Smith writes about the video for The Stream.
The latest Planned Parenthood sting video introduces us to a new player in the baby body parts industry: Advanced Bioscience Resources, Inc. (ABR), a small company that has trafficked human tissue from Planned Parenthood longer than any other entity.
The most damning testimony in the video comes from Perrin Larton, the Procurement Manager at ABR, who describes ABR’s fetal tissue harvesting practice to a prospective buyer. “I literally have had women come in and they’ll go in the O.R. and they’re back out in 3 minutes, and I’m going, ‘What’s going on?’ Oh yeah, the fetus was already in the vaginal canal whenever we put her in the stirrups, it just fell out,” she says, wide-eyed.
“Whenever we have a smooth portion of liver, we think that’s good!” says Larton. She tells stories with gruesome images of doctors pulling babies out “by the abdomen” and tearing up their chests and stomachs, which is distressing to her because they’re damaging that liver that she needs. “It really pisses me off.”
Larton says she regularly gets specimens as late as 21, 20 weeks, and that 18–22 weeks is a workable range for the tissues the buyers want to procure.
One overwhelming impression of these engagements is the way in which the intellectual defense of Christian faith attracts men. Both at Texas A&M and again at Miami every single student who got up to ask a question was a guy! I wondered if the girls are just shy. But then I remembered a lengthy clip Jan and I watched of cast members of Downton Abbey doing a Q&A with an audience in New York. Almost every person who came to the microphone at that event was a woman! It wasn’t until late into the evening that a man finally asked a question, which was remarked by all the cast members. Why the difference between that session and the ones I experienced?—simply because the Downton Abbey program is highly relational, which is more appealing to women, whereas my talks were principally intellectually oriented, which is more appealing to men.
Churches have difficulty attracting men, and the church is becoming increasingly feminized. I believe that apologetics is a key to attracting large numbers of men (as well as women) to church and to Christ. By presenting rational arguments and historical evidences for the truth of the Gospel, by appealing to the mind as well as the heart, we can bring a great influx of men into the Kingdom. I’m so pleased that the church in Canada seems to be awakening to this challenge! I’m convinced that we have the opportunity to revolutionize Western Christianity by reclaiming our intellectual heritage.
Now, I hear a lot of complaints from women in the church and pastors in the church about men not being interested in going to church. I think that the problem is that church is hostile to men’s natures. Men thrive on conflict and competition. Men prefer strict rules and moral judgments. Men prefer to shame people who underperform, rather than coddle them. Men are practical and results focused. So how should the church accommodate the different nature that men have? Apologetics is one way to appeal to the male nature.
Let’s take a look at it.
Pastors: church as it is now is abrasive to men’s male nature
In William Lane Craig’s most recent podcast, at time 8:47, the WLC tells Kevin Harris about how he and his wife Jan asked about six of the young men who attend his “Defenders” apologetics class which morning service they attended: traditional or contemporary. ALL of the young men said that they attended neither service, because they go to church to learn something and the service has no educational value to them. The only attend the Defenders class. The apologetics class taught them things they could actually use – things they could actually use to think better, and fight better. This is my experience as well, although I am looking for a better church that does have some appeal to men. I might even have to move to find a decent church that has apologetics.
There is absolutely nothing going on in most churches that is valuable to a man. Men, by and large, only pray as a last resort, after we have done everything we can to solve the problem ourselves. We pay the most attention to the parts of the Bible that help us debate with non-Christians, or that give us things to do. We like to find evidence in the real world that connects with what the Bible is saying. We are interested in planning, execution and results. We are not very interested in feelings, singing, devotions, or bending the rules to make people doing bad things feel good. Now that’s not necessarily true for all men, but it is true for the majority of men.
And lest some people worry that fighting makes enemies, it doesn’t. Fighting with non-Christians has two effects: 1) they respect Christianity more, and 2) they want to be your friends and talk to you about spiritual things. I just got an e-mail from Captain Capitalism this week (he is a non-Christian) expressing some interest in what it is that I am doing as a Christian. He reads the posts where I take on atheism, they don’t make him respect me less as a Christian at all. He thinks that standing up for what you believe in and living consistently with it makes you authentic. That is not the exception, Christian women and pastors – that is the rule. Atheists don’t think that standing up for what you believe in makes Christianity look fake, they think it makes Christianity look authentic. Well, at least the ones who you want to talk to think that.
Wives: don’t choose men who had no interest in advocating for Christianity before you married them
A related problem I see is the problem of wives marrying the wrong men then complaining that the men they freely chose to marry are not interested in church. This is actually the woman’s fault. Most women don’t think about what is best for God when they think about who to marry and have children with, they think about what makes them feel good. They don’t have any kind of plan where they match the man’s ability to the roles he will play as husband and father – they just pick who makes them feel good. This works about as well as buying and selling stocks based on which make you feel good, or choosing electronics and computers based on the color, or choosing a job or a church based on what the building looks like. The Bible lays out a few minimal requirements for a man: chastity, self-sacrificial love, providing for family, leading on moral and spiritual issues. Most young, unmarried women don’t value those things. If a woman picks a man who doesn’t make any demands on them, and who doesn’t judge them, then she cannot depend on him to show spiritual and moral leadership later on in the marriage. So don’t pick a man like that.
Wives: men respond to attention, recognition and approval from women
The reason that most husbands don’t engage in Christianity is because most wives (not my married friends of course) haven’t approached Christianity as something that is objectively true. Men don’t create illusions for themselves in order to feel better – they are more practical than that. Men only invest in things that they think are true, and where they can see that their practical efforts will make a difference. Men are turned off by the view that Christianity is just something that helps families and communities bond, and makes people feel comfort. We think that’s weakness, and we abhor weakness. Once men get the idea that a woman thinks of Christianity as feelings-fulfillment, we stop trying to achieve anything for the Kingdom of God. Men don’t want to be roped into Christianity if all it means is helping people get along and feel good. But they very much want to be roped into a demanding relationship with God where their efforts to achieve results count with God and gets them recognition and approval from their wives.
So how do wives learn to recognize and approve of what men do as Christians? Well, women need to learn apologetics and they need to practice debating with non-Christians. That will teach them to value conflict and competition, and to see how engagement and authenticity drives relationships with non-Christians forward. If women show an interest in objective truth, moral goodness and theological correctness, then men will become interested in these things, too. They will do it because men are addicted to pleasing women, and they want to help women more than anything in the world, second only to pleasing God. Men will enthusiastically engage in whatever will get them praise and recognition from women, and that means that women have to care about Christianity beyond their personal emotional experience of it and beyond their social cohesion experience of it. Initially, wives must be ready to praise and encourage their husbands, and then once the husbands get it, then they will be self-motivated and move out on their own. It will be self-sustaining.
Gov. Greg Abbott launched a new set of proposals Friday to defund Planned Parenthood and pass restrictions on the collection of fetal tissue.
[…]On Friday, Gov. Abbott announced a new initiative in response under the acronym “LIFE.”
“Gruesome – and potentially illegal – harvesting of baby body parts by Planned Parenthood cannot be allowed in Texas,” Abbott said in a statement accompanying the announcement. “Treating unborn children as commodities to be sold is an abomination. The barbaric practice of harvesting and selling baby body parts must end.”
The initiative states, “Laws must be changed to make it a felony under Texas law to perform a partial-birth abortion; and make it illegal for abortion doctors to risk a woman’s health by altering the procedure to preserve fetal body parts.”
[…]It further states, “Funding for Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers out of taxpayer money must be eliminated completely, both at the State and local levels.” Public funding has already been cut off in Texas, where affiliates don’t even participate in tissue donation.
Finally, the governor proposes to “eliminate and criminalize any sale or transaction of fetal tissue by an abortion clinic for any purpose whatsoever,” which would restrict tissue collection largely to hospitals.
Texas is a red state, although they have lots of blue major cities with Democrat mayors – yuck.
Meanwhile, there’s more good news from Nebraska – another red state.
Five state lawmakers already have approached Nebraska Right to Life this summer about sponsoring anti-abortion bills next year, according to Julie Schmit-Albin, the group’s executive director.
“I’ve had more interest,” Schmit-Albin said last week.
Among those is Bellevue Sen. Tommy Garrett’s planned measure to target so-called “dismemberment abortions,” a term used to describe a dilation and evacuation procedure that is standard practice in abortions beginning 12 weeks after conception.
Schmit-Albin described so-called dismemberment abortion bans as “another chipping away” at the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 decision in Roe v. Wade guaranteeing women the right to abortion.
In 2010, Nebraska became the first state in the nation to ban most abortions beginning at 20 weeks. The change was based on the theory that by that point, a fetus has the capacity to feel pain. More than a dozen states have since passed similar bans.
Garrett is also a Republican.
LIfe News notes that Nebraska is not the first to propose a ban on dismemberment abortions:
Earlier this year, Oklahoma became the second state in the nation to protect unborn children from dismemberment abortions that tear them apart limb from limb. Previous to that Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback signed similar legislation prohibiting dismemberment abortions in the state. Model legislation provided by National Right to Life is also under consideration in the legislatures of Missouri and South Carolina.
The Democrats would love to roll back all of these restrictions at the state and local level, but for now they don’t have control of the House and Senate to push their bill to do that through to Obama, who would undoubtedly sign such a bill.
(Note: Chicago is one of the most anti-gun cities in the United States, if not the most anti-gun)
This is from the leftist New York Times, so I’ll have to separate fact from fiction.
Here’s some fact:
Cities across the nation are seeing a startling rise in murders after years of declines, and few places have witnessed a shift as precipitous as this city. With the summer not yet over, 104 people have been killed this year — after 86 homicides in all of 2014.
More than 30 other cities have also reported increases in violence from a year ago. In New Orleans, 120 people had been killed by late August, compared with 98 during the same period a year earlier. In Baltimore, homicides had hit 215, up from 138 at the same point in 2014. In Washington, the toll was 105, compared with 73 people a year ago. And in St. Louis, 136 people had been killed this year, a 60 percent rise from the 85 murders the city had by the same time last year.
Now, non-Americans might be tempted to think that America is filled with gun violence, but actually, the gun violence is relegated to the major cities, which are run by Democrats. And sometimes, like with Detroit, there has not been a Republican running things for years. Cities like Washington and Chicago have very, very anti-gun policies, so criminals understand that they can commit crimes with impunity – their victims are likely to be unarmed. The only thing standing between law-abiding citizens and crime are the police and the prisons. Unfortunately, liberals are opposed to both the police and the prison system. They want to handicap the police by crying “racism” all the time, and they want to release criminals from the prisons. Bottom line: in cities run by Democrats, there is no deterrent.
President Obama has been particularly hard on police officers, claiming that their attempts to enforce the law are motivated by racism. And Obama’s supporters are getting the message.
Warning: Strong language here.
Let’s talk a look at some rhetoric from a radio show.
One of the F***YoFlag organizers is called “Sunshine.” She has a radio blog show hosted from Texas called, “Sunshine’s F***ing Opinion Radio Show.”
[…]During the show, callers clearly call for “lynching” and “killing” of white people.
They conspired that if “cops started losing people,” then “there will be a state of emergency.”
[…]Another black man spoke up saying they needed to kill “cops that are killing us. The first black male said, “That will be the best method right there.”
So there are actually police officers getting killed. Here’s one story from Reuters:
Houston-area officials on Saturday blamed the shooting death of a sheriff’s deputy on anti-police sentiment around the country over policing and race.
[…]Harris County deputy Darren Goforth, in uniform, was pumping gas into his patrol car on Friday night when the gunman approached from behind and fired several shots, sheriff’s officials said. No motive has been reported.
[…]”Our system of justice absolutely requires a law enforcement presence to protect our communities, so at any point where the rhetoric ramps up to the point where calculated cold-blooded assassination of police officers happen(s). This rhetoric has gotten out of control,” Hickman said.
[…]The suspect in video of the Goforth shooting appeared to be black. The deputy was white.
Television stations showed footage provided by police, from a gas station surveillance video that caught the ambush of Goforth, a 10-year veteran of the sheriff’s department, who left behind a wife and two young children.
Now it’s important to note that in this Houston killing, we don’t have the clear motive yet that we had in the case of the two New York police officers who were murdered. In fact, the shooter here has a history of medical illness. Still, this event will have an affect on police.
What happens to police officers in the face of these murders, and in the face of this rhetoric, and in the face of these Democrat politicians like Obama and Holder blaming police for enforcing the law? Well, the police naturally start to wonder whether it’s worth it to risk their lives so much.
In Alabama, one white police officer was so scared about being perceived as racist, that he let a black criminal take his gun and pistol whip him. The UK Daily Mail explains:
Alabama police are outraged after photos of a detective beaten bloody by a suspect who stole his gun during a traffic stop were shared by witnesses and praised on social media.
The suspect, 34-year-old Janard Cunningham, is charged with attempted murder for allegedly assaulting the six-year veteran following a traffic stop at a shopping center in Roebuck around 11am Friday.
[…]During the traffic stop, the detective pulled over Cunningham’s SUV and told him to stay in the car while he waited for backup to arrive.
Cunningham is said to have fled the scene after beating the officer until he didn’t move anymore. A second suspect was released without any charges
The suspect disobeyed that order, questioned why he had been stopped and then struck the officer in the head with his own weapon, AL.com reported.
The beating reportedly continued until the officer was no longer moving, with Cunningham then fleeing the scene.
[…]After the arrest, photos of the bloodied detective began popping up on social media, with some commenters applauding what happened.
Other Alabama officers were angered by the outpouring of support for the suspect.
Birmingham police Sgt Heath Boackle, president of the Fraternal Order of Police, said: ‘He was laying there lifeless and people were standing around taking pictures.
‘If the tables were turned, and that was a suspect lying there, they would be rioting.’
So what does this all mean? Well, to me it means that I need to be very careful about where I am going to live, because I can’t count on the police to come and rescue me as much as I could before. They are seeing what is happening, and they don’t want to die for people who don’t respect them. What is interesting is that the epidemic of black on black crime is going to get worse if police withdraw. And I think they should really think twice about stopping crimes in places where they are likely to get into trouble. Eventually, people will get the message. I would also say that now would be a good time to move to states that allow you to own firearms, and allow you to use them – i.e., states dominated by Republicans. The Democrat plan to control crime is this: you can’t own guns, and the police need to be intimidated into not doing their jobs. And it doesn’t help that Democrats keep encouraging fatherlessness by paying women to have babies before they get married. Fatherless men commit more crimes.