- The Washington Times - Friday, December 12, 2003

Evil or simply foolish?

Bruce Fein’s Tuesday Commentary column, “Afghan constitutional debacle,” is completely unsurprising. The bright fellows behind the Project for the New American Century (Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld, Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz, et al.) talk a lot about establishing “democratic, pro-American” regimes all across the Middle East, and they seem to be trying to put those ideas into practice in Afghanistan.

The problem is, these two terms are not necessarily compatible. A democratic regime may be a pro-American regime, or it may freely and democratically vote to initiate a jihad against us.

The PNAC is not so much an evil plan as a just plain stupid one.

RICH GARDNER

Horsham, Pa.

The splotch on Michael Powell’s record

I read with great interest Arnold Kling’s Wednesday Commentarycolumn,”Hayek, Stiglitz and the FCC.” Like Mr. Kling, I have long been a harsh critic of former Federal Communications Commission Chairman Reed Hundt, but I believe Mr. Kling strains credulity to describe current FCC Chairman Michael Powell as Nobel Prize-wining economist Friedrich A. von Hayek’s intellectual heir and, as such, “a man of rare and precious wisdom.” In reality, a close examination of Mr. Powell’s record indicates that he is far from a follower of Mr. von Hayek’s teachings and, therefore, should be heavily criticized by those who truly believe in competition and deregulation.

Most notably, while most know Mr. von Hayek’s maxim that “what cannot be known cannot be planned,” Mr. von Hayek also was an adamant opponent of industry concentration. Indeed, Mr. von Hayek warned nearly 60 years ago that an economic policy that deliberately facilitates the creation and maintenance of monopoly “will, in the end, defeat the potential for competition and deregulation because as monopolies become stronger, it is inevitable that people will become united in a general hostility to competition.” As Mr. von Hayek therefore concluded, “once competition continues to erode, then the only alternative to a return to competition is control of the monopolies by the state — a control that, if it is to be made effective, must become increasingly more complete and more detailed.”

Like it or not, Mr. Powell — in his misguided belief that the miracle of technology will somehow supercede the basic laws of economics and eliminate the plethora of market power still held by incumbents — has been a tacit, if not overt, proponent of industry concentration. Not only has he taken steps to thwart new entry into the wire-line segment of the telecom industry (thus actually increasing Bell companies’ market power) but, as the recent broadcast ownership debacle (in which Mr. Powell was immediately overruled by the entire Republican-controlled Congress) showed, he does not care about media concentration, either.

Is Mr. Powell a “man of rare and precious wisdom” in the tradition of Friedrich A. von Hayek? I don’t think so.

LAWRENCE J. SPIWAK

President

Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies

Washington

The sociological ramifications of same-sex ‘marriage’

Tod Lindberg (“The case against same-sex ‘marriage,’ ” Op-Ed, Tuesday) correctly notes that the most coherent argument against homosexual “marriage” is the belief that homosexuality is wrong. But he dismisses the sociological case too quickly.

The most compelling arguments are rarely heard, such as well-documented evidence that children fare best in intact families with married parents and that homosexuality carries enormous physical and mental health risks.

The journal AIDS reported that in the Netherlands, where homosexual “marriage” was legalized in 2001, HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases are soaring among homosexual men — even those who are “married.” “Partnered” homosexuals have fewer outside lovers than the “unpartnered,” but they still contract HIV at alarming rates. This is progress?

The moral argument for marriage is easy to make to those who acknowledge self-evident truth. But even if marriage were not created by God Himself as the fountainhead of human life, a powerful sociological case can be made for the real thing. Homosexual “marriage” would, among other things:

• Further weaken the family, the first defense against an ever-encroaching government.

• Encourage children to experiment with homosexuality. This would ensure that more teens contract HIV; hepatitis A, B and C; “gay bowel syndrome,” human papillomavirus (HPV), syphilis, gonorrhea and other sexually transmitted diseases.

• Put more adopted children at risk, as agencies stop favoring married couples and put children in motherless or fatherless households.

m Encourage more people to remain trapped in homosexuality rather than seek counseling to rechannel their sexual desires.

m Pit the law against the beliefs of tens of millions of people who believe homosexuality is wrong, thus creating grounds for more attacks on the freedoms of speech, religion and association.

In California, employers must subsidize homosexual relationships or lose state contracts. Employers also must promote transsexuality or risk a $150,000 fine. Foster care parents have been ordered to affirm children’s sexual “identities,”includingthatof “cross-dresser.” If you’re a Californian who believes in traditional morality, your government regards you as an enemy of the state. If homosexual “marriage” becomes legal nationally, all Americans will be subject to the tender mercies of pro-homosexual bureaucrats.

Mr. Lindberg notes that many people think homosexuality is wrong but are embarrassed to say so. It’s not because of the “weakness of this argument,” however, but rather because of the media campaign to portray traditionalists as “bigots.” During the Vietnam War, liberals invoked former Sen. Joseph McCarthy’s ghost to silence anti-communist opinion. Today, sexual libertines similarly suppress honest discussion.

When the Rev. Earle Fox was given three minutes for dissent at the recent consecration of homosexual Episcopal bishop Gene Robinson, he began listing typical practices of homosexual behavior. “I wanted them to know what they were blessing in God’s name,” he said. The chairman cut him off.

Until the realities of homosexuality are examined publicly, Mr. Lindberg may be right that only moral arguments will carry any weight.

ROBERT H. KNIGHT

Director

Culture & Family Institute, an affiliate of Concerned Women for America

Washington

‘D’ for the District

In regard to the article “Teaching jobs face ax in school budget deficit” (Metropolitan, Wednesday) by Jim McElhatton: Headlines such as this make me angry. Here we are in the nation’s capital — the most important city in the world — and we’re failing our children. I don’t know all the ins and outs of how the District’s school system managed to get a $38 million budget deficit, but I do know we can’t continue to fail where the future of our children is concerned.

Didn’t first lady Laura Bush recently begin an education initiative focusing on recruiting the best and brightest to the teaching profession and ensuring that all young children are ready to read and learn when they enter the classroom? What happened? Did she forget that she also lives in this great city? Doesn’t she care about the children who live in her own back yard?

PAMELA A. HAIRSTON

Washington


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