Patterico's Pontifications


Carly Fiorina: When In Doubt, It Must Always Be The Parent’s Choice

Filed under: General — Dana @ 9:46 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Carly Fiorina made a stand for parental and religious rights when discussing vaccinations tonight at a town hall meeting after a mother of five told her that she had not vaccinated her children for religious reasons:

GOP presidential hopeful Carly Fiorina said Thursday that parents should not be forced to vaccinate their children against diseases like measles and mumps, although she added that public school systems can forbid unvaccinated children from attending.

“When in doubt, it is always the parent’s choice,” Fiorina said during a town hall in an agricultural building in rural Iowa on Thursday evening. “When in doubt, it must always be the parent’s choice.”

“We must protect religious liberty and someone’s ability to practice their religion,” said Fiorina, receiving a round of applause. “We must devote energy and resources to doing so. Period.”

Fiorina later expanded on her comments:

“When you have highly communicable diseases where we have a vaccine that’s proven, like measles or mumps, then I think a parent can make that choice — but then I think a school district is well within their rights to say: ‘I’m sorry, your child cannot then attend public school.’ So a parent has to make that trade-off.”

Fiorina said that when it comes to “these more esoteric immunizations” for diseases that are not contagious or communicable, school districts should not be allowed to mandate that children receive the vaccination.

During an interview earlier this year, Fiorina was asked about vaccinations:

Asked whether a recent measles outbreak that has spread across 14 states signals further proof that children need to be vaccinated, Fiorina said, “I think parents have to make choices for their family and their children.”

But Fiorina, the former CEO of Hewlett-Packard who is considering a 2016 presidential bid, added, “I think there’s a big difference between — just in terms of the mountains of evidence we have — a vaccination for measles and a vaccination when a girl is 10 or 11 or 12 for cervical cancer just in case she’s sexually active at 11. So, I think it’s hard to make a blanket statement about it. I certainly can understand a mother’s concerns about vaccinating a 10-year-old.” “I think vaccinating for measles makes a lot of sense. But that’s me. I do think parents have to make those choices. I mean, I got measles as a kid. We used to all get measles… I got chicken pox, I got measles, I got mumps.”


Ted Cruz: What I Would Ask Hillary Clinton

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:04 am

[guest post by Dana]

In a recent interview, Ted Cruz offered the question he would put to Hillary Clinton if they were to meet on the debate stage next year. Quite obviously, Cruz is a thoughtful and savvy politician who not only has a clear understanding of economics, but also sees how vital it is that Republicans expose destructive liberal narratives:

“Over the last six-and-a-half years, the rich have gotten richer and hard-working men and women across America have seen their lives get harder and harder,” Cruz said during an exclusive interview with The Federalist on his campaign bus. “The people who have been hurt the most are the most vulnerable. Young people, Hispanics, African-Americans, single moms.”

“We’ve seen for two terms now the big government policies you and Barack Obama advocate don’t work,” Cruz said before getting to the ultimate question for Hillary. “Why should anyone believe a third term of the same failed policies would produce anything different?”

He continued with what I believe is the correct take on how Clinton would respond:

“I think she would respond with high level rhetoric about income inequality that would not address any of the substance,” Cruz told The Federalist. “And then I hope to come right back at her with: I emphatically agree income inequality is a tremendously important problem. That’s why it is such a compelling indictment of your record that it’s increased dramatically under your policies.”

Cruz explained that the Republicans have a great opportunity to expose and correct that tired, old myth that the “GOP is rich and out of touch, while Democrats are the party of the working man”. This especially as Cruz’s own parents experienced serious financial hardships, while Hillary and Bill Clinton have made untold millions “exploiting their government service”.

All things considered, one can only hope to God that Cruz and Clinton will face off on the debate stage and that Cruz will have an opportunity to put his question to Clinton, because given this, I think he would brilliantly mop the floor with her:

[Clinton’s] economic agenda will be organized in three parts. The first is about breaking down barriers to joining the workforce, including increasing private and public investments in an infrastructure bank, tax relief for small businesses and clean energy development.

Clinton’s second area of focus is reducing income inequality. She will assert that the current economy unfairly rewards some work, such as financial trading, more than other work. She will celebrate Obama’s new rules on overtime but also urge raising the minimum wage and overhauling the tax code to make the wealthiest Americans pay what she considers their fair share. She will also back collective bargaining and reducing health-care costs.

The third area is corporate reform. She plans to argue that companies should focus more on creating lasting value, such as investing in their workers, than on earning quarterly profits to satisfy shareholders. To that end, she will call for more investments in research and development, tax- structure changes and new rules on shareholder activism.

The Democrats need to be confronted every day by Republicans who know how to turn the argument around and how to forcefully and effectively lay bare the liberal policies which do not benefit Americans in the long run.

Oh, and the reason Cruz would not ask Clinton about any of her many scandals instead?

“If one goes down the road of scandals with Hillary, it would consume more than a two-hour debate,” Cruz joked. “And frankly, the key to winning in 2016 is running a populist campaign of hard-working men and women against the bipartisan corruption of Washington, which Hillary embodies.”


UPDATE BY PATTERICO: Looks like I have found a point of disagreement with Ted Cruz. I could not care less about income inequality, except to the extent it is caused by government policy. To the extent capitalists make money by selling goods and services at the prices people want them, they are benefiting society and deserve every penny they can make.

James O’Keefe Believes He Was Targeted By Homeland Security

Filed under: General — Dana @ 6:35 am

[guest post by Dana]

Undercover filmmaker, James O’Keefe claims that he has been the target of Homeland Security since he dressed up in an Osama bin Laden costume in 2014, and successfully sneaked across the border into Mexico and back again into the U.S. in an effort to counter the official lie that our borders are secure.

Since that time, when O’Keefe has crossed the border, he has been questioned extensively by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers, and claims their questions have been “overly intrusive, covering everything from his business operations and what his next investigative project will be to his political views”:

“It is our contention that this is retaliation for our journalism along the Mexican border,” O’Keefe said. “It’s troubling that they are doing this to a citizen reporter…these questions have nothing to do with national security or border issues or smuggling narcotics into the country. They are questions that they would never ask a Washington Post reporter, that they would never ask NBC News.”

To buttress his claims, O’Keefe is doing what he does best: releasing a surreptitiously recorded video. The nine-minute, 16-second production provides hints that DHS was not pleased by O’Keefe’s bin Laden venture, but reveals no clear evidence that the agency is targeting him.

At one point, a Customs and Border Protection officer at the Montreal airport is heard asking O’Keefe on July 14: “Maybe you’ve passed the border before in a disguise? Or dressed as someone else? You’ve done that kind of stuff before?”

“So are they retaliating against me?” O’Keefe asks.

The officer firmly denies it. “No, we’re not retaliating against you? Why would you say that?” he says.

At another point, however, a different Customs and Border Protection officer tells O’Keefe that agency officials had put a “hit on you” to avoid getting “egg on their face, basically.”

The video does show, however, officers asking O’Keefe a series of detailed questions about his business model, how his company makes money and his political views.

“What’s your next project?” one officer asks.

“I was so flabbergasted by the question, I couldn’t even form a coherent response,” O’Keefe says in the video.

An officer then asks O’Keefe who he wants to win the Republican nomination for president and if he would support businessman Donald Trump, who has fueled his political rise with outspoken comments about illegal immigrants.

“I don’t really endorse politicians for, you know, anything,” O’Keefe responds.

Anyway, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said it could not comment on any specifics of O’Keefe’s “case”, but did make a general comment that “CBP does not retaliate against applicants for entry into the United States,” said the statement, adding that travelers in general can be sent to additional, secondary screening based on a variety of factors, including security concerns, immigration violations and prior criminal convictions.

I think O’Keefe can be most assured that he is a viewed as a security concern by the agency.


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