HBO series mocks attitude of Dem Senator Vitale

If you want to have an idea of what happens when a nation replaces science with ideology… emotion instead of logic… and takes to bullying science into submission instead of following the data… tune into HBO’s series Chernobyl

Or… you can just attend a committee meeting of the New Jersey Senate chaired by Joseph Vitale.  Either is likely to feature a scene like this one…

Joseph Vitale is the Chairman of the New Jersey Senate's  Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee and he is anything but a gentleman – or even a human being – when lording over his committee.  We vividly remember him in committee arguing with a citizen over Senate Bill 1195 – then legislation, now law – which allows people to alter their birth certificates to whatever gender they wish, without undergoing sexual reassignment surgery.  Yes, in New Jersey, people with penises can legally be women and people with vaginas can legally be men.  Talk about ideology stepping on reality – this is Chernobyl level! 

Senator Vitale, was the main sponsor of Senate Bill 1195 and his exchange with this citizen exercising the right to speak before the New Jersey Legislature was anything but respectful.  There was something of the sociopath in the Senator's behavior -- one moment he was dripping sensitivity, only to turn vicious the next.  There's no remorse – he doesn't appear to care how he treats people who don't agree right down the line with him.  Does he lack a conscience?  We wonder. 

What placed Vitale in the same class as the Chernobyl-denying ideologue in the video was the way he utterly dismissed the reputation of a scholar whose words were entered into the record by the citizen.  Senator Vitale appeared to have no intellectual curiosity at all.  Here is that exchange:

The Senator:  "...You are citing some medical director, obviously he's a former medical director, probably for good reason."

The Citizen:  "Because he retired."

The Senator:  "Um, right, good thing."

Now someone with Vitale’s level of certainty must have some credentials to back up such a coarse dismissal.  So we wondered if the Senator was a doctor or a professor, after all, he is the Chairman of the committee through which passes all health care legislation in New Jersey.  We looked up his biography and found out that he managed to make it through the 12th grade.  Yep, born in 1954, went from high school to the family business, drifted into the muck of Woodbridge politics, became one of the boys, was selected by the boys as their Senator when Jim McGreevey ran for Governor.

And what about that "medical director" the one the Senator said was "obviously... a former medical director, probably for good reason" and that it was a "good thing" he was no longer working?

Well that guy was born in 1931 and is a psychiatrist, researcher, and educator.  He is University Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and the author, co-author, or editor of seven books within his field.  He was the son of a high school teacher and a homemaker.  He graduated from Harvard College in 1952 and from Harvard Medical School in 1956.  He was accepted into the neurology and neuropathology residency program at the Massachusetts General Hospital where he studied for three years under the chief of the Neurology Department.  From Massachusetts General, he went to the Institute of Psychiatry in London (where he studied under Sir Aubrey Lewis and was supervised by James Gibbons and Gerald Russell). Following London, he went to the Division of Neuropsychiatry at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research.  He has held various academic and administrative positions, including, Professor of Psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College (where he founded the Bourne Behavioral Research Laboratory), Clinical Director and Director of Residency Education at the New York Presbyterian Hospital Westchester Division and Chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Oregon.  From 1975 until 2001, he was the Henry Phipps Professor of Psychiatry and the director of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science at the Johns Hopkins University.  At the same time, he was psychiatrist-in-chief at the Johns Hopkins Hospital.  He is currently University Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His own research has focused on the neuroscientific foundations of motivated behaviors, psychiatric genetics, epidemiology, and neuropsychiatry.  During the 1960s, he co-authored papers on hydrocephalus, depression and suicide, and amygdaloid stimulation.  In 1975, he co-authored a paper entitled "Mini-Mental State: A Practical Method for Grading the Cognitive State of Patients for the Clinician." This paper details the Mini Mental State Exam (MMSE), an exam consisting of just eleven questions, that quickly and accurately assesses patients for signs of dementia and other states of cognitive impairment. It is one of the most widely used tests in the mental health field.  In 1979, in his capacity as chair of the Department of Psychiatry, he ended gender assignment surgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital.  In 1983, he co-authored The Perspectives of Psychiatry, which presents the Johns Hopkins approach to psychiatry. The book "seeks to systematically apply the best work of behaviorists, psychotherapists, social scientists and other specialists long viewed as at odds with each other."  A second edition was published in 1998.  He also treated author Tom Wolfe for depression suffered following coronary bypass surgery. Wolfe dedicated his 1998 novel, A Man in Full to him, "whose brilliance, comradeship and unfailing kindness saved the day." He is a registered Democrat who describes himself as a "political liberal".

And you Senator... you made it through the 12th grade.

Senator Vitale, don't you think it would have been a lot wiser to shut your mouth, open your ears, and maybe learn something?  Maybe read one of the guy's books before dismissing him out of hand?  Or don't, perhaps this is why health care is what it is in New Jersey? 

Maybe New Jersey is in the shape it is in because of the lack of humility and unwillingness to learn exhibited by politicians who set policies – guys like Joseph Vitale.  Maybe a Committee Chairman too stupid to learn does result in substandard government and people being made to suffer?

Next week in Trenton: Marijuana and other shady stuff

Legalizing marijuana – including so-called “edibles” in the shapes of chocolate bars, peanut butter cups, cookies, and candies (in other words, attractive to young children) – is number one on the agenda of some Trenton Democrats.  The Senate Democrat leadership is pushing marijuana – in the midst of an opioid epidemic, no less – but an opposition of principled Democrats and Republicans, led by Senator Ron Rice (D-Newark) has formed and they are pushing back. 

Senator Rice, who was on the front lines defending America as a Marine in Vietnam and defending innocents as a police officer on the streets of Newark, now he has taken the point again and this victory, when it comes, will have been gained by his courage and leadership.  God bless Senator Ron Rice.

Now a new study supports Senator Rice and the bi-partisan coalition that has formed around him.  The study is by the leading psychiatric journal of the English-speaking world, The Lancet Psychiatry, a renowned peer-reviewed journal that is part of The Lancet, the world's most important medical journal.  You can access the study here:

www.thelancet.com/journals/lanpsy/article/PIIS2215-0366(19)30048-3/fulltext

Here's the takeaway…

Daily cannabis use was associated with increased odds of psychotic disorder compared with never users (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 3·2, 95% CI 2·2–4·1), increasing to nearly five-times increased odds for daily use of high-potency types of cannabis (4·8, 2·5–6·3).  

It's worth noting that what the authors call "high-potency cannabis" is flower marijuana (aka buds) with more than 10% THC. Most cannabis sold in legal U.S. dispensaries is about 20-25% THC. In other words, by American standards, the cutoff was actually quite low. Using that daily led to a fivefold increase in the risk of psychosis.

The other takeaway…

If high-potency cannabis were no longer available, 12% of cases of first-episode psychosis could be prevented... rising to 30% in London.

In other words, marijuana appears to be producing a measurable increase in the number of psychosis cases in Europe - 1/3 of all cases in London (where use patterns are most similar to the United States) are due to cannabis use. If that's correct, than legalization and the increased use it produces is even more of a public health disaster than we thought.

Maybe the most important comment on the study came from Dr. Adrian James, who is the Registrar of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, the British equivalent of the American Psychiatric Association:

“This is a good quality study and the results need to be taken seriously. Cannabis carries severe health risks and users have a higher chance of developing psychosis."

www.sciencemediacentre.org/expert-reaction-to-daily-cannabis-use-potency-and-psychosis/

The Assembly will have a voting session on Monday, March 25, 2019.  Legalizing marijuana – including child-unfriendly “edibles” – is top on the agenda.  There will be individual Democrat and Republican caucus meetings at 11:00 AM.  The Assembly voting session will begin at 1:00 PM.  Citizens are urged to attend and observe this session.  The Senate is meeting the same day.  We will send out the Senate schedule over the weekend.  Here is the legislation up for consideration by the Assembly:

Anti-Catholic bigotry is alive in the Democrat Party

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Recently Victor Davis Hanson wrote an insightful column titled, “The Return of Ancient Prejudices,” which illustrates how so much that is called “progressive” is, in fact, a return to a past barbarism.  We do not move so much forward, as we chase our tails… round and round, repeating past mistakes and re-learning (usually, the hard way).

There is a whiff of the Dark Ages evident at most committee hearings of the New Jersey Legislature.  Think on those grinning inquisitors – Senators like Vitale and Scutari – who mock science in favor of superstition, emotion, and the new religion-of-the-groin.    

The Return of Ancient Prejudices

By Victor Davis Hanson

In the latter half of the 19th century and early in the 20th century, as Catholic immigrants poured in from Ireland and eastern Europe, an anti-Catholic wave spread over a mostly Protestant United States. The majority slur then was that Catholic newcomers’ first loyalty would be to “Rome,” not the U.S.

Anti-Semitism grew even more deeply rooted, marked by Ivy League quotas on Jewish applicants and exclusionary clauses against Jews in clubs and neighborhoods. It was no accident that the Ku Klux Klan often targeted Catholics and Jews as well as African-Americans.

In the late 19th century, with the influx of Japanese and Chinese immigrants arose the “yellow peril” scare, a racist distrust of supposedly workaholic automatons and unassimilable immigrants whose first loyalty was to their close-knit Asian communities and homelands, not the U.S.

Most of these injustices grew from both original prejudices (as evidenced by slavery) and fears of demographic change. An original population that was mostly British, Protestant and white gradually was augmented by people who were not northern European, often Catholic and increasingly non-white.

The stereotyped hatreds were battled by the melting-pot forces of assimilation, integration and intermarriage. Civil rights legislation and broad education programs gradually convinced the country to judge all Americans on the content of their characters rather than the color of their skins or their religious beliefs. And over the last half-century, the effort to end institutional bias against African-Americans largely succeeded. 

But recently, other ancient prejudices have been insidiously returning. And this time, the bias is more subtle, and it can be harder to address than traditional racism against non-white populations. The new venom, for example, is often spread by left-wing groups that claim victim status themselves and thus, by their logic, should not be seen as victimizers.

Progressive senators such as Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), and Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) have attacked judicial nominees on grounds that they are Catholic, apparently because the Catholic Church and its affiliates officially disprove of abortion and gay marriage.

Feinstein complained that one appeals court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett, was a dubious choice because “the dogma lives loudly within you.” Hirono claimed that judicial nominee Brian Buescher was suspect because the Knights of Columbus held “extreme positions.” Harris whined that the public-service Catholic organization was an “all-male society comprised primarily of Catholic men.”

Recently, a number of newly elected congressional representatives—Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib—have voiced virulent anti-Israel bias that came off as anti-Semitic. Rep. Hank Johnson (D-Ga.) compared Jewish settlers on the West Bank to “termites.” CNN pundit Marc Lamont Hill (who has since been fired) parroted the Hamas eliminationist slogan “Palestine from the river to the sea,” which is code for the destruction of the Jewish state.

Universities feel free to discriminate against Asian-Americans because their hard work and excellent preparation often leads to superb grades, test scores and application credentials. In other words, Asian-Americans supposedly distort progressive agendas of proportional representation, disparate impact and diversity by overachieving and being overqualified—purportedly robbing spots from other minority applicants.

Asian-American achievement also disproves the old canard that prejudice makes it impossible to find parity in the United States. 

A is behind the rebirth of these old prejudices? In short, new, evolving prejudices.

First, America seemingly no longer believes in striving to achieve a gender-blind, racially and religiously mixed society, but instead is becoming a nation in which tribal identity trumps all other considerations.

Second, such tribal identities are not considered to be equal. Doctrinaire identity politics is predicated on distancing itself from white males, Christians and other groups who traditionally have achieved professional success and therefore enjoyed inordinate “privilege.”

Third, purported victims insist that they themselves cannot be victimizers. So, they are freer to discriminate and stereotype to advance their careers or political interests on the basis of anything they find antithetical to their own ideologies. 

The Democratic senators who questioned the morality of judicial nominees’ religion likely would not treat a Muslim nominee in the same manner—although one could make the argument that contemporary Islam has had as many or more problems with gender equity than Western Catholicism has.

Calling any other ethnic group other than Jews “termites” might have earned Rep. Johnson congressional censure. And if professional football and basketball franchises turned away talented but “over-represented” African-American athletes to ensure greater diversity in the same manner that universities now systematically discriminate against Asian-Americans, there would be a national outcry. 

What once helped to diminish ancient prejudices was the American creed that no one had a right to discriminate against fellow citizens on the basis of race, gender, class or religion.

And what fuels the return of American bias is the new idea that citizens can disparage or discriminate against other groups if they claim victim status and do so for purportedly noble purposes.

The more attitudes and agendas may change, the more they stay the same.

New bill helps rich LGBT One Percenters at the expense of the poor and working class

To illustrate how silly things have become, in the not-too-distant future someone will need to channel comedian Will Franken when seeking government assistance in New Jersey: “Who do I need to (sleep with) to get some help (in New Jersey)?”

Don’t know Will Franken?  He’s a regular at the Edinburgh Fringe, someone on the cutting edge of comedy.  In 2015, Franken went transgender and spent seven months living as Sarah Franken.  Franken told The Guardian, he had lived as a woman years earlier, for a few months, while a 20-something in San Francisco.  Franken is known for taking on multiple characters during his stand-up routines.  Franken, who has now “transitioned” back to being Will again, has been compared to Andy Kaufman and Firesign Theatre…

But we digress…

So why will validation of sexual preference (via a sex act???) be the new means test in the New Jersey that Phil Murphy is in the process of designing? 

ANSWER:  Because of new laws that are being passed by New Jersey’s Legislature (and then signed into law by Governor Moe-Moe). 

Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin was recently praised by a group calling itself the “New Jersey LGBTQ Democratic Caucus”:

“On behalf of our members and our community the New Jersey LGBTQ Democratic Caucus would like to extend our gratitude and praise to the Assembly and Speaker Coughlin on passing A3162, which would create certain assistance programs for businesses owned by lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender persons, by persons with a disability, and by veterans. With the passage of A3162 the Assembly has sent a clear message that all businesses are welcome and that New Jersey rewards hard work.”

Get a load of that last line of b.s.  New Jersey is the worst state in America to start a business – with the worst business climate in America.  Are we to believe that A-3162 is really the best way to send “a clear message that all businesses are welcome and that New Jersey rewards hard work”?  How about cutting property taxes and addressing regulation???

All that A-3162 really does is to reward someone based on who they select for a sex partner.  That’s it.  Sex-based affirmative action. 

To make the legislation more palatable, the honorables engaged in the dishonorable practice of using “persons with a disability” and “veterans” as a cover.  Nobody wants to vote against something for them… and with good reason.  But we have news for Speaker Coughlin and his Assembly Democrats… bi-sexuality is not a disability and serving in the military is not a sex act.

The fact that the Democrats had to mix apples and oranges in order to get this legislation passed is an admission that the LGBTQ cause is not a popular one – certainly not popular enough for even the majority Democrats to pass it on its own merits.  We have news for the  “New Jersey LGBTQ Democratic Caucus” – selling out is not a victory.  It is an open and public demonstration of your weakness and lack of popular support.

Hiding behind “persons with a disability” and “veterans” to advance your sex-based agenda is no different than a terrorist using children and other noncombatants as a shield, to hold them hostage, to coerce an action from those legislators who would otherwise vote differently.It is cowardice and you should learn from your betters…

We blame Speaker Coughlin, when too often it really isn’t the name on the marquee that is the problem.  It’s the same reason that National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month has been ignored by the New Jersey Legislature and the Human Trafficking and Child Exploitation Prevention Act can’t get a committee hearing. 

The majority Democrats in the Legislature have allowed January to pass by without formally recognizing it as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month – an idea that President Barack Obama came up with in 2010.  In every other state in America it’s been recognized… but not in New Jersey!  This despite the fact that the United Nations, the U.S. State Department, and groups like Amnesty International, have recognized human trafficking as the fastest growing organized criminal activity on earth.  The state’s Attorney General has pointed to plenty of instances of it going on in New Jersey, but the Legislature is ignoring it.  Why? 

ANSWER:  Because some staffer in Democrat Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg’s office thinks the effort to combat human trafficking will get in the way of his sexual gratification.  So it doesn’t get a committee hearing.

It’s time start naming names and unpacking the people who whisper into the ears of those in power, who steer them.  Some legislators, Senator Tom Kean Jr. among them, have argued that staff should be outside the bounds of polite discourse – that they are somehow not political.  President Ronald Reagan disagreed.  Reagan held that “people are policy” and that who hold these positions do more to craft the politics of the day than do those who actually hold elected office. 

So it is time to take a hard look at the likes of Mickey Quinn, who appears responsible for taking the hostages for A-3162.  Not Speaker Coughlin… Mickey Quinn.

Stay tuned…

Blame Trenton Democrats for making Cory Booker discuss his sexuality

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Writer Matt Katz recently tweeted: “Cory Booker confirms his heterosexuality (which he has to do, because opponents have stirred rumors about this from the beginning) & says he sees a pathway to becoming the first unmarried president since 1884.”

Well lucky Cory Booker… at least he is alive to confirm his sexuality.  That’s not the case with James Buchanan, the 15th President of the United States, and someone whose sexuality has been the center of endless speculation – in an attempt to codify same and to teach children that he was America’s “first gay president.”

See, the LGBT movement has become a kind of religion… well, not kind of, it is a religion.  This new religion has adopted, as one of its core beliefs, something not unlike the Mormon Church’s “baptism for the dead” – also known as vicarious baptism or proxy baptism.  In the new LGBT faith, living people speak on behalf of those who are dead and ask on their behalf to become “gay” so that they may be added, posthumously, to the fold. 

Once added to the LGBT “sainthood” their life “stories” are then taught to children in the didactic manner, much as children in religious schools are taught about the lives of saints or martyrs or prophets.  In New Jersey, with yesterday’s passage of S-1569, the Legislature has made this an unfunded mandate – with the scrapping of old textbooks and their replacement with new “religious” tracts that focus on the lives of said “saints”. 

Strange how things go.  That we are back to this again.  It is like the ring-around-the-rosy in Poussin’s “Dance to the Music of Time”.  There is no such thing as progress… we just get stupid again, profligate, dissolute. 

But the religion bit is for real.  No less than Atlantic magazine and New York magazine have today unveiled stories that paint Cory Booker as the candidate of a “new” religion.  Atlantic calls it the “theory of love”, while New York magazine plumps for “candidate of the Christian Left”.  No kidding.  So it’s here.  Welcome to the new paradigm.  The religion of the Trenton Democrats is no longer Roman Catholic or Jewish or Protestant… but that of the golden ass, the most holy orgasm, and the sacrament of abortion.  These are not matters of policy… but of faith.  Not open to debate.

Writing in the Star-Ledger yesterday, reporter Jonathan Salant (pronounced Slant) noted that when Booker first ran for the Senate and was asked about his sexual orientation, Booker answered, “What does it matter?” 

We could not agree more.

But that was back in those quaint times of long ago… 2013.  Today, in today’s politics, religion matters – and nothing matters more than how you reach orgasm and with whom.  Piss on policy… today’s religious leaders in politics, corporate America, and academia want to know how you get down.  Just read S-1569.  It is the most important thing about you.

Poor Cory Booker.  He wants to run for President, so he has to declare a side.  And in the America of today – the America fostered by legislation like that passed yesterday in Trenton – it is a conundrum as great as that faced by any Irish politician in the midst of The Troubles.  What are you?  Who are you?  It’s all that matters.