Monday, November 29, 2010

My Big Fat Homoerotic Christmas

A TSA pre-screen? SBE? I'm sure it's Kosher, whatever it is.

How many millions of Chinese Yuan did we borrow to pay for this?
The federally funded National Portrait Gallery, one of the museums of the Smithsonian Institution, is currently showing an exhibition that features images of an ant-covered Jesus, male genitals, naked brothers kissing, men in chains, Ellen DeGeneres grabbing her breasts, and a painting the Smithsonian itself describes in the show's catalog as "homoerotic."

The exhibit, “Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture,” opened on Oct. 30 and will run throughout the Christmas Season, closing on Feb. 13.
If you've been wondering why some billionaires are itching for higher taxes, this is the problem: We've got bills to pay...
The Smithsonian Institution has an annual budget of $761 million, 65 percent of which comes from the federal government, according to Linda St. Thomas, the Smithsonian's chief spokesperson. The National Portrait Gallery itself received $5.8 million in federal funding in fiscal year 2010, according to St. Thomas. It also received $5.8 million in federal funding in fiscal 2009, according to the museum’s annual report. The gallery’s overall funding in that year was $8 million.
If you're like me and you don't like having your income confiscated to pay for sex art, it's only because you're an intolerant, immature rube: asked Ward if he thought the exhibit might be offensive to people who disagree with the homosexual lifestyle. He said, “I believe that the American public is mature and tolerant in its opinion of alternative points of view. This is an art and cultural exhibition that displays important and key works of artistic creation and attempts to interpret them against the background of American history.”
One needn't frame this as a debate over religion or sexual proclivities. We simply don't have the money. Should the federal government be spending ¥3,300,000,000 ($500,000,000) each year on the Smithsonian Institution, passing the bill to future generations of Americans?

As millions of Americans struggle to find employment and the Federal Government contemplates increasing taxes in the midst of a recession, cutting funding to organizations such as NPR and the Smithsonian should be easy decisions. And if conservatives in Congress don't have the courage to confront these relatively small challenges, there's not much hope for tackling the entitlement crisis that threatens to bankrupt this country.

Happy holidays!

Update: Islamic sensibilities were NOT harmed in the making of this exhibit.

Discussion: Memeorandum

Sunday, November 28, 2010

They are just doing their jobs

By Lilac Sunday

Film critic Roger Ebert has written an interesting blog post about the TSA's new screening procedures. For the record, he draws the line at proctological exams in the security line, and he wonders whether children traumatized during screening will grow up to inflict trauma on others.

Ebert also describes the unique challenge he faces as a passenger who has no choice but to present himself at airline security with bandages around his neck and large quantities of liquid food:
Meanwhile Chaz and Millie. my care provider, are trying to get through security with my medicines, my cans of liquid food, stuff like that. They have a letter from the doctor, but usually the TSA supervisor has to be called over. I understand that. My policy is to cooperate, because these are not evil people and they're only trying to do their jobs. (emphasis added)
They're only trying to do their jobs. Where have we heard that before?

Public acquiescence to misconduct by those in uniform is a necessary precondition for tyranny. For example, Kim Jong Il may be madder than a hatter, but he requires armies of bureaucrats and administrators drawn from the ranks of ordinary people, and ordinary people obeying those bureaucrats and administrators, to maintain North Korea as a hermit kingdom.

I am not suggesting that TSA's porno scanners and pap smear pat-downs are evidence that America is descending into tyranny, but the fact remains that evil cannot take hold in a society without public acquiescence to misconduct by those in uniform, and it is therefore critical that Americans do not develop the habit of suppressing our anger, objection, and humiliation with the justification that TSA staff are just good people trying to do their jobs.

Nor should we reassure ourselves that America is sufficiently different from other societies that have gone mad, that it couldn't possibly happen here.

In 1971, Stanford University professor psychology Phillip Zimbardo designed and conducted a two-week experiment into the psychology of prison life.

From 75 student volunteers, he selected the 24 determined to be the most psychologically healthy and randomly assigned them to play the roles of prisoners or prison guards in a mock prison set up in a Stanford University building.

The experiment, now known as the Stanford Prison Experiment, was shut down after only six days, because the guards became sadistic and were subjecting the prisoners to escalating levels of cruelty. Even the prison guards who did not personally mistreat the prisoners did nothing to stop the cruelty inflicted by their fellow student volunteers.

A bunch of middle-class college kids, given uniforms and power over others, quickly began to personify a unique species of evil, that of people in uniform acting under government authority.

And now our government is insisting that law-abiding Americans must acclimate ourselves to physical humiliation at the hands of uniformed government employees, because it's for our own protection. For the love of a free society, we must resist.

Cross posted at Lilac Sunday: Red Girl in a Blue State

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Have a Happy Thanksgiving...and take a moment to review the most important lesson of the first Thanksgiving in 1623:

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

It's Time: The Tea Party vs. Obama's Corporate Cronies

Photo credit: Michal Marcol

Taking on "the man" isn't just for hippies anymore:
Starting next year, the huge Tea Party organizer FreedomWorks will urge supporters to punish huge corporations like General Electric and Johnson & Johnson for backing President Obama's progressive agenda.

In an exclusive review for Whispers of their plan, FreedomWorks president Matt Kibbe says: "Tea Party activists are willing to tackle progressive CEOs just as they tackled progressive politicians. Judging by the results of the midterm elections, progressive CEOs should buckle up, because Tea Party activists are going to give them a very bumpy ride."

His project partner, Tom Borelli, director of the National Center for Public Policy Research's Free Enterprise Project, added: "Big businesses are now on notice that there is a measurable business risk for actively supporting the Obama, Reid, and Pelosi progressive public policy agenda."
Of course there will be some disagreement about which companies should be punished, and it will be important to watch out for conflicts of interest, but by and large, I think this is a positive development:
The groups released a new Wilson Research Strategies poll to Whispers which shows how companies could suffer when conservatives are told of their support for Obama's agenda. The poll found that when customers are told of a consumer product firm's support for healthcare reform, bailouts, cap-and-trade energy policies or other issues pushed by the administration, their favorability among conservatives plummets.

A few examples:

-- General Electric. The firm has a 51 percent favorable image, but when poll takers were told of it's support for the Obama economic stimulus plan, only 20 percent had a favorably impression of the consumer giant.

-- Johnson and Johnson. Nearly 69 percent had a favorable impression of the health company before Johnson and Johnson's support for health reform legislation was detailed to survey-takers. Afterward, that favorability dropped to 16 percent.
Could a conservative boycott movement work?
The poll also found that 81 percent of conservative voters active in the Tea Party would be "less likely to buy products from companies that actively lobbied to pass Obama's $787 billion stimulus plan," and 61 percent would blog, Facebook, or upload a YouTube video urging backers to boycott their products.
Even lefties are forced to admit that the threat of a Tea Party boycott is likely to induce gnashing of teeth.

Evan McMorris-Santoro frets that a group that has just taken back Washington can "inspire fear" in a boardroom. Digby at Hullabaloo also concedes that the boycott plan is smart:
The clever part of this is that they will frame this as a "clean government" initiative, to root out corrupt alliances between the Democrats and their corporate masters. And Democrats, who are concerned about such things as well will be unlikely to defend these corporations. Indeed, we will be helping to punish them, for all the right reasons.
Surely Saul Alinsky is thrashing around in his grave.

Of course conservatives aren't opposed to profits, free-enterprise, capitalism or corporations. They're opposed to corporate welfare, tax-payer funded bailouts and big-government cronyism.

For these reasons, General Electric is a good company to target. I'd also add WalMart for their support of ObamaCare, and L-3 Communications and OSI Systems for lobbying for Porno Scanners in airports (soon coming to a courthouse, boat or train near you!)

Discussion at Memeorandum

Monday, November 22, 2010

Congress: Heckuva Job, TSA

Americans are irate at the TSA's new Hobson's Choice of Nudie Scans vs. porno pat-downs, but members of Congress are, by and large, quite happy:
  • "Mr. Pistole, you're doing a great job," Jay Rockefeller, chairman of the Senate committee overseeing air travel, told TSA chief John Pistole. For emphasis, Rockefeller added a few minutes later: "I think you're doing a terrific job."
  • Sen. Amy Klobuchar admitted right away that "I have been a fan of the advanced imaging technology." American air travelers, she said, "have to understand that this is being done for their best interests and their safety."
  • "I'm wildly excited that I can walk through a machine instead of getting my dose of love pats," Sen. McCaskill said.
Why are Americans in disagreement with their betters in Congress?

Two companies make the nudie scanners that have necessitated the implementation of porno pat-downs for those who refuse the radiation: L-3 Communications and Rapiscan (a subsidiary of OSI systems). These companies have paid MILLIONS of dollars for votes in Congress.

With this in mind, I thought I'd take a look at members of Congress who have received some of the biggest direct payments from the Nudie Scan companies in this election cycle to see how well they're endorsing and defending the products:

Loretta Sanchez (D-CA)

There's been a lot of debate over TSA's use of full-body scanners and "enhanced pat downs" (which include open hand touching of passengers’ inner thighs, buttocks, and breasts). These new measures are likely here to stay, but I want to hear your thoughts: are TSA's new screening procedures too invasive? Or do they help you feel more secure when you travel?
This is a very good statement from Congresswoman Sanchez. While expressing concern for her constituents' opinion on the matter, she gently suggests that resistance is futile. She focuses attention on the porno pat-downs to distract from controversy over the Nudie Scans.

As a Nudie Scan CEO, I'd give this statement a grade "A."

Charles Schumer (D-NY)

Sen. Chuck Schumer on TSA screenings: Deal with it

“If you’re going to travel you have to cooperate,” Mr. Schumer said.

[Freedom of speech: Schumer is not up for re-election until 2016!]

“I don’t think I’ve been through the kind of invasive body search that they’re talking about,” Schumer said, “every so often, my name comes up and I get patted down.”

“It’s fine with me. I’ve never seen them be inappropriate or something that made me uncomfortable in any way.”

If I were at L-3, I'd give Chuck Schumer a "B+." He needs to soften the message just a bit, but otherwise, he's doing a pretty good job. No mention of any complaints with the scanners... Pat-downs: inconvenient; Nudie-Scans: a non-issue!

Patty Murray (D-WA)

“Keeping Washington residents safe and keeping our economy moving go hand in hand,” Senator Murray said. “Getting these in-demand, high-tech [Nudie Scanners] into Spokane’s airport will help address evolving threats and keep the traveling public safe.”

As a Nudie Scan manufacturer, I'd give Murray a "B-" for this statement. The message is great, but it needs to be updated. This statement was issued in March.

Orin Hatch (R-UT)

"Sometimes, I think they push it way too far," says Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch. "But, we're living in a dangerous world."

Hatch says it's a difficult balance between privacy and safety. Sitting on the Senate Intelligence Committee, he says he knows more about the realities of terrorist threats than most Americans.

"I don't blame our people from trying to make sure that the airline flights are safe," the senator says. "On the other hand, I think sometimes they go overboard. People just don't like those total body scanners."

We understand Orin Hatch is likely to face a Tea Party challenge in 2012, but this statement is disappointing. Giving lip service to the voters' concerns is perfectly appropriate, but this can be achieved without making disparaging comments about Nudie Scanners. In the future, Hatch should state that he expects that "the public will come to appreciate the convenience of Total Body Scanners when they learn more about the technology."

Orin Hatch gets a "D" for this statement.

Byron Dorgan (D-ND)

“It’s more invasive than I’m used to,” acknowledged Mr. Pistole, when asked by Sen. Byron Dorgan (D) of North Dakota if he had received an enhanced pat-down himself, during a Wednesday morning hearing of the Senate Commerce, Science, Transportation Committee.

Byron Dorgan gets an "A+" for this exchange with TSA Administrator John Pistole. Dorgan asked a question that gives the appearance of sympathy for the travelling public while adhering to three cardinal rules.
  1. Ask softball questions about TSA screening protocols.
  2. Direct attention away from Nudie Scans and toward porno pat-downs.
  3. In your discussions about TSA procedures, don't provide any juicy sound bites or any memorable quotes.
Dorgan can expect a flood of $ support from the Nudie Scan industry for his re-election campaign in 2012!

Bonus statement from the POTUS:

Barack Obama (D-IL)

In 2008 OSI CEO Deepak Chopra gave Obama a maxed-out personal donation of $2,300

"One of the most frustrating aspects of this fight against terrorism is that it has created a whole security apparatus around us that causes huge inconvenience for all of us," Obama said.

Barack Obama's statement sympathizes with Americans' feelings while rightfully dismissing their concerns as a petulant uproar over a mild "inconvenience." His delicate use of terrorism-based scare tactics is simply delightful. While Obama's lack of Clintonesque "feel your pain" empathy is a bit disappointing, his authoritative statement earns him a solid "B+."

Your money quote of the day: "The TSA chief stressed that the pat-downs are only for those who refuse the scanners..."

Open Secrets number of the day ... L-3 Total Lobbying Expenditures for 2010 so far: $4,290,000

Related: Body scanner makers doubled lobbying cash over 5 years (USA Today)

Even sooner than I expected: Next step for body scanners could be trains, boats, metro. Full-body scanners popping up at courthouses.

Discussion: Memeorandum

Temple of Mut: Profiling? No, risk assessment.

TSA NSFW: Embarrassing, Demeaning and Inappropriate

Remember the unfortunate 5-year-old boy who was publicly strip searched at the airport this weekend? New details are beginning to emerge:
The filmer, Luke Tait, wrote that "the boy was shy so the TSA couldn’t complete" the search.

The child was physically resisting agents, Tait said.

"Twice before the video starts, his dad had to hold him and pulled his arms up in a V-shape to allow the TSA agent to continue," he told The Salt Lake Tribune.

The father pulled the boy’s shirt off "in frustration," prompting an agent to shout, "Sir, sir!" Tait said...

Tait said he walked toward the father and son to talk with them after agents sent them into the terminal, but a man in a dark suit pulled him aside. The man had just been speaking with TSA agents, Tait said, but he did not show a badge or identify himself.

"He started to question me: ‘Why was I recording the procedures of TSA?’ ‘What are your plans with this video?’ " Tait said. "I said it looked like something was going on; I never [before] saw a shirtless young boy getting patted down."

The man then told Tait to delete the video in front of him, arguing the video invaded the family’s privacy.
Oh, the ironic hypocrisy! The gropers are worried about privacy!

This morning, the TSA's official internet troll, Blogger Bob, sent me a link to an "explanation" of the strip search:

"@rightklik Response to 'Young Boy Strip Searched by TSA' →"

Here's the TSA's spin:
On November 19, a family was traveling through a TSA checkpoint at the Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC). Their son alarmed the walk through metal detector and needed to undergo secondary screening. The boy’s father removed his son’s shirt in an effort to expedite the screening. After our TSO completed the screening, he helped the boy put his shirt back on. That’s it. No complaints were filed and the father was standing by his son for the entire procedure.
Tommy Christopher makes a very important point: "TSA’s account points out that 'no complaints were filed,' but that obviously doesn’t mean no one complained."

The bottom line is that this is very cold comfort from the TSA. The new screening protocols are so invasive, people are stripping down to avoid gropes and radiation. And if you don't take off your clothes, the TSA is going in anyway. ABC News producer Carolyn Durand gives a graphic personal account:
The woman who checked me reached her hands inside my underwear and felt her way around. It was basically worse than going to the gynecologist. It was embarrassing. It was demeaning. It was inappropriate.


And via the San Francisco Examiner, here's the obligatory see-thru underwear pat down protest video [Warning: NSFW]:

Discussion: Memeorandum


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Graphic Government Warnings: TSA Edition

Earlier this month, the Feds took warning labels to a higher level of intensity with graphic propaganda designed to scare the nicotine addiction out of smokers. Good luck with that!

In response, bloggers produced warnings designed to alert Americans to the dangers of the Federal Government and to caution voters on the perils of voting for Democrats. (Check out Doug Ross's creations.)

This week, TSA ushered in a brave new world of government paternalism with a stubborn commitment to expensive and unpopular "naked scan" airport screening technology. The new machines promise to make professional lobbyists and their friends in Congress very happy and make the Fourth Amendment obsolete. This calls for a new batch of government warnings. Maybe this one should come with each purchase of a commercial airline ticket:

John Tyner became an instant folk hero when he warned Big Brother not to touch his "junk" at the airport. The TSA responded by telling Tyner, "By buying your ticket you gave up a lot of rights." Rather than submit, Tyner went home.

Now Tyner faces an $11,000 fine for embarrassing the TSA by posting a recording of the conversation on YouTube.

Muslim terrorists undoubtedly reacted to the plans for widespread use of naked scans by solidifying plans for rectal bombs.

Update: Expect no mercy.

Update II: American Power celebrates Rule 5 with the more refreshing perspective on air travel.


Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution: "The right of the people to be secure in their persons...shall not be violated…"

George Will: "Government is instituted to protect pre-existing natural rights essential to the pursuit of happiness. Today, that pursuit often requires flying..."

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Breaking: New TSA Outrage... Strip Searching Children? Update: TSA responds

Latest post on this topic here.

Dislaimer: I don't know the context, and I don't know if this video is legitimate, but here it is and it doesn't look good:

Does this make the public safer?

Stay tuned, updates will follow.

A disturbing video surfaced on Friday night showing what appears to be a TSA agent strip searching a young boy, with his father standing nearby. The video, which was uploaded to Youtube by user lukemtait, was filmed while a boy was randomly selected to undergo a random security check.

The video’s description read, “Lets get the facts straight first. Before the video started the boy went through a metal detector and didn’t set it off but was selected for a pat down. The boy was shy so the TSA couldn’t complete the full pat on the young boy. The father tried several times to just hold the boys arms out for the TSA agent but i guess it didn’t end up being enough for the guy. I was about 30 ft away so i couldn’t hear their conversation if there was any. The enraged father pulled his son shirt off and gave it to the TSA agent to search, thats when this video begins.”

Addendum: TSA Responds (11/22)...
"On November 19, a family was traveling through a TSA checkpoint at the Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC). Their son alarmed the walk through metal detector and needed to undergo secondary screening. The boy’s father removed his son’s shirt in an effort to expedite the screening. After our TSO completed the screening, he helped the boy put his shirt back on. That’s it. No complaints were filed and the father was standing by his son for the entire procedure."

Aside from some subjective descriptors, the only difference between the two accounts is the fact that the child set off the metal detector. TSA’s account points out that “no complaints were filed,” but that obviously doesn’t mean no one complained.
This is cold comfort from the TSA. The new screening protocols are so invasive, people are stripping down to avoid gropes and radiation. If you don't take off your clothes, the TSA is going in anyway.

Update II: John at Verum Serum takes note.

Update IV: Comments at The Lonely Conservative

Update V: TSA pat-down leaves cancer survivor covered in urine

Update VI: Gateway Pundit: ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

Update VII: C
hildren being strip searched for weapons of mass destruction:

Now a video has emerged that shows TSA officials virtually strip-searching a young boy in full view of the public.

It is not clear where the incident took place, but the video was uploaded to Youtube today.

It shows a boy who appears to be less than ten years old with his shirt removed while a male TSA official runs his fingers up and down his legs as well as inside the waistband of his pants.

The child is eventually allowed to put his shirt back on and continue towards his flight and we are all safer because of it.

Or are we?

Update VIII: "The individual TSA agent is technically not allowed to make any tough calls. He must simply implement policy, regardless of the result. This strikes freedom-loving individualists as stupid and cowardly. It makes us mad. Ironically, these policies do not stop agents from using their discretion. All it does is cover their butts whenever they choose to more strictly enforce the policy than they usually do."

Related discussion at Memeorandum.

X-posted at Left Coast Rebel

Exit comment: I've canceled plans for my upcoming long distance trip. I will NOT take my child to an airport until this nightmare is over.

Update: Linked at NoOneOfAnyImport. Thanks!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Conservative Military Doctor Attacked by Liberal Punks

Andy Harris learned about the value of freedom from his parents who "fled Communist invasion after World War Two, joining hundreds of thousands of other refugees fleeing the totalitarian Soviet regime. Like so many others, they saw America as President Reagan's 'shining city on a hill', and came here to build a new life with literally nothing more than the clothes on their backs."

Before running for political office, Harris served his country well:
Andy has devoted his life to hard work, giving back, and fighting to preserve the freedoms envisioned by our founders and framed in our constitution. Andy served 17 years in the United States Naval Reserve, including active duty during Desert Storm. He served as Commanding Officer of the Johns Hopkins Naval Reserve Medical Unit, and is a member of the American Legion. He achieved the rank of Commander.
Harris continues to serve his country and he is now the U.S. Representative-elect for Maryland's 1st congressional district.

As a physician, Andy Harris knows what's wrong with health care in America. His prescriptions for market-based health care reforms are clearly in the mainstream:
...there are a few things I think we can all agree on: covering those who can't afford insurance, lowering costs, making sure you don't lose your insurance if you change jobs and covering pre-existing conditions.
In fact, his views tilt a bit to the left in at least one area:
Creating a health care "exchange," one of the better ideas included in House Bill 3200, creates affordable, accessible and portable insurance for millions of Americans. An "exchange" would allow everyone to choose their health care insurance from a broad range of options -- just like federal employees and Congress do right now...
Harris is clearly NOT an anti-government extremist when it comes to health care insurance. In fact, he's only slightly right-of-center. But when Andy Harris showed up to Congress on Monday for freshman orientation, he was immediately confronted with another obvious failure of government-administered, taxpayer-subsidized health insurance:
Republican Andy Harris ... reacted incredulously when informed that federal law mandated that his government-subsidized health care policy would take effect on Feb. 1 ... 28 days after his Jan. 3rd swearing-in.

“He stood up and asked the two ladies who were answering questions why it had to take so long, what he would do without 28 days of health care,” said a congressional staffer who saw the exchange. The benefits session, held behind closed doors, drew about 250 freshman members, staffers and family members to the Capitol Visitors Center auditorium late Monday morning,”.

“Harris then asked if he could purchase insurance from the government to cover the gap,” added the aide, who was struck by the similarity to Harris’s request and the public option he denounced as a gateway to socialized medicine.
Similar to the public option? Uh... no, not at all! It's exactly like H. R. 3200's health insurance exchange, the one Harris explicitly supported while running for Congress.

It's unfortunate that Andy's uber-liberal critics are intellectually incapable of understanding the function of a rhetorical question. For their benefit, I'll provide video of remarks from Congressman-elect Harris:

I have insurance, and I have the ability to have insurance. But for anyone else who gets a job — and again, the irony that the federal government would go to the American people (and most importantly, our employers) and say that you have to provide insurance — and yet when our federal employees get hired, if they don't get hired on the right day of the month, they actually have to go without insurance for a while...
(Perhaps the glaring deficiencies of government-administered health care inspired Obama to hand out ObamaCare waivers to his best friends, including the ones who campaigned for ObamaCare.)

For the record, Andy Harris has health insurance coverage through the Johns Hopkins medical system. His coverage will not expire before his new Congressional benefits take effect.

Harris's comments come as no surprise to those are familiar with his long-held positions on health insurance reform. Here's a quote from September of 2009, published on Andy's campaign website:
People [should] have a health care insurance policy they can call their own. They could choose one that exactly fits their families' needs and their budgets, be able to take that coverage with them from job to job...
Liberals twist out of context virtually everything conservatives say in order to create the illusion of controversy and hypocrisy where none exists. They use this Alinskyite strategy as a way to shut us up and "raise the cost on the right of going after the left."

Liberal politicians and liberal journalists manufacture opportunities to grab conservatives and and rhetorically "smash [them] through a plate-glass window." They then "take a snapshot of the bleeding mess and send it out in a Christmas card to let the right know that it needs to live in a state of constant fear."

Examples of this hateful technique:

  • Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-Playboy) et. al: "We also find it interesting that members of the Republican conference would have no problem taking away health coverage from hard-working Americans, but expect expanded coverage for themselves and their families."
  • Michael J.W. Stickings: "...what he's saying is, '[f**k] the millions and millions of Americans who either don't have adequate coverage or don't have coverage at all. [F**k] 'em. All that matters is me!'"
  • Physicians for a National Health Program: "Our medical school admissions committees need to set the bar higher. All applicants accepted should meet the standard of possessing common decency. Too bad Andy Harris snuck through."
  • Baltimore Sun: "What a doofus. He missed a golden opportunity to take a stand on principle. He could have announced he wasn't taking taxpayer-subsidized health insurance because he didn't believe in such things, picked up his welcome bag and walked out of the meeting."

There's absolutely nothing wrong with conservatives taking jobs that serve legitimate, constitutionally-mandated government functions. And when a conservative takes a paid government position, there's no hypocrisy or irony in expecting timely dispensation of the compensation package that comes with his or her job.

But Dr. Harris' personal health care needs are not what this controversy is all about. Harris's controversial comments vividly illustrate the undesirability of benefits "provided" by government and they furnish another powerful argument against more government intrusion into the private health care industry.

Let's stand up for ObamaCare critics when they are smeared.

Hat Tip: Memeorandum