Monday, March 2, 2009

Kathleen Sebelius

After all the promises President Obama made during the campaign about health care, the HHS post (Secretary of Health and Human Services) has got to be one of the most important. Well, what's not important these days? With the economy the way it is and foreign affairs, who could say those players are not important? But I feel the success or failure of Obama to keep his promises about health care for all, is crucial in our eventual judgment of his presidency.

It seems to me there couldn't be a better choice than Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius. I wouldn't be surprised if all that nonsense with Daschle was programmed into this choice. I often feel that the political "surprises" that suddenly alter careers in Washington are not surprises at all but elaborate theatrics for our benefit.

Concerning abortion, since she is Catholic, Sebelius has had to walk a difficult line with Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City in Kansas. This is what Planned Parenthood has to say about her:
Sebelius has been endorsed by Planned Parenthood and they have conducted fundraising activity on her behalf. Sebelius vetoed abortion legislation in Kansas in 2003, 2005, 2006, and again in 2008.

In 2008, Sebelius vetoed House Substitute for Senate Bill 389, titled the Comprehensive Abortion Reform Act by its sponsors. Proponents of the bill claimed the legislation would strengthen late-term abortion laws and prevent “coerced abortions” particularly with respect to minors.

On Capital Punishment, About.com says the following: "Owing to her Catholicism, Sebelius is opposed to capital punishment." I didn't think the two were mutually exclusive, Catholicism and Capital Punishment, but I can certainly see how a serious Catholic person can conclude that the death penalty is wrong. Wikipedia reports the good news about Kansas.
No one has been executed by the state of Kansas since 1965, although capital punishment is legal there.

Her ideas on gun control are the epitome of common sense, it seems to me. The following is from On The Issues.
Sebelius has said she supports Kansans’ right to own firearms, but does not believe a broad concealed carry law would make them safer: “I don’t believe allowing people to carry concealed handguns into sporting events, shopping malls, grocery stores, or the workplace would be good public policy. And to me the likelihood of exposing children to loaded handguns in their parents’ purses, pockets and automobiles is simply unacceptable.”

Other than vetoing the concealed carry law, she's been responsible for no new restrictions, supposedly supports the 2nd Amendment and even signed a bill, which "repealed a 1933 state law prohibiting civilian ownership of machine guns and other firearms restricted by the National Firearms Act of 1934 provided that any prospective civilian owner successfully meets the requirements of the NFA. The law was passed in part to address legal issues that could have prevented dealers from delivering firearms to law enforcement agencies in Kansas."

Does all that make her a friend or a foe of the pro-gun movement? I think she betrayed her true feelings in that comment about the concealed carry law. They all say they support the 2nd Amendment, at least publicly, and the machine gun law may have been all about those complicated legal ramifications. What's your opinion on her gun stance?

In general what's your opinion of Kathleen Sebelius? Are her ideas about capital punishment and gun control completely outside the scope of her new job? She has also been praised for eliminating a $1.1 billion debt she inherited when she took office. Do these things influence her ability to do the job of Secretary of Health and Human Services?

Please leave a comment.

20 comments:

  1. I might suggest, Mike, that former governor and medical doctor, Howard Dean would have been a solid choice as well.

    Sebelius is an Ohioan, the daughter of former Ohio Governor John Gilligan, and thus has long political roots.

    I had to smile about the section of your post regarding 'religion' and the abortion issue. Were this medieval times, the archbishop your referenced would have had much more authority over her selection. As this is 2009, we ought to put the religion litmus test to rest.

    But, of course, those righteous right-wingers in the GOP will have their panties all in a knot over this issue in an attempt to obfuscate her abilities to manage the Department of HHS.

    Here in 21st century America, we commonly watch the 'religious right' interfere with solid democratic governance at the expense of some biblical blather. It makes one wonder if we Americans are operating under a Christian Wahhabiism.

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  2. Since the Kansas Legislature overrode her veto due to its overwhelming and bipartisan popularity, her minority view on CCW doesn't really represent 'common sense'. Now does it?

    Unfortunately, she based her opinion on "police chiefs" who were politically motivated and involved w/ anti-gun groups, not the rank and file who generally support CCW.

    She's a "C". Good thing she doesn't have any authority in that area anymore.

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  3. A politician that claims to support the second amendment, but does not support concealed carry licenses is basing the decision on emotion and political agenda rather than facts, experience and common sense. We have data from about 4.5 million people with licenses, enough to prove that we are safer than police.

    At least some of the other "common sense" proposals are unproven. Concealed carry licensing is well-proven to be at worst neutral in regards to crime, and in most cases associated with a slight reduction.

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  4. Thirdpower, Did I miss something? Was that veto overridden? Is concealed carry permitted in Kansas in spite of her opposition?

    What's She's a "C" mean?

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  5. The only states left with NO provisions for legal concealed carry are Illinois and Wisconsin. Wisconsin's legislature has passed a carry law twice, but hasn't been able to override the governor's veto.

    40 states are "shall issue" to those who meet their published objective criteria. Another few states are effectively shall issue. The remainder are likely to issue a license if you are a wealthy white campaign contributor, but other people (especially middle-class minorities) have a harder time getting a license.

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  6. Sebelius' veto was overridden back in 2006; Kansas is now a shall-issue CCW state.

    Sebelius being a "C" presumably refers to her NRA rating, although i haven't checked that.

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  7. Yes, it was overridden w/ an overwhelming, bi-partisan vote in both houses. They actually gained votes for the override.

    I rate her a "c" at best. My scale, not the NRA's.

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  8. good thing. I can't imagine living in a state where I could not have an opportunity to defend my self and my family against criminals with guns. It's all fun and games until you get held at gunpoint and having no power to resist.

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  9. "It's all fun and games until you get held at gunpoint and having no power to resist."

    Mike and his ilk love that, because it creates more death for them to reference in their backwards gun laws.

    It's why "Evil" groups like the NRA who Mike and Helmke et al imply want violence and dangerous guns in the streets spend millions of dollars every year on safety courses and training safety instructors, and have things like the Eddie Eagle safety program and the NRA safety rules (I prefer the Jeff Cooper one myself)

    MEANWHILE groups like the Brady Campaign, Violence Policy Center, the Joyce Foundation, and the various cease fire groups spend NOTHING in education and safety.

    Why? Well more safety training means less accidents, and Accidents with guns are these asshole's life blood! As you can see from Mike's cartwheels (that are now making him look rather ridiculous) their side is on the loosing one, so they can't allow any disadvantages.

    Hell even fake pro-gun group American Hunters and Shooters (which oddly enough has direct ties to the Brady Camp, and doesn't even represent hunters or shooters....or even have members) only supplies a page of safety information, but no resources to actually attending a safety class.

    Try that trick on any 2nd Amendment website!

    Mike wants more people to die, because he can't admit he's wrong, and one more death will allow him one more angle for misinformation.

    Disgusting.

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  10. "all that nonsense with Daschle" ?

    Just a little nonsense to the tune of 100,000 in unpaid taxes? A drama orchestrated for our benefit?

    I wish. Intstead, it is an example of the hyposcrisy of the democratic party --which wants to raise my taxes while their leaders forget to pay theirs.

    It just shows that the monkeys are in charge of the zoo!

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  11. Barb, I don't think that kind of hypocrisy, if that's what it is, is limited to the Democrats, do you?

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  12. So, I guess the reason they even mention that overridden veto is to describe her gun stance. That would make her another anti-gun politician who "supports the 2nd Amendment."

    I'm curious about that "C" rating. Is that a way of grading people on their pro-gun philosophy. What are some of the others? Are there written criteria? Can anybody get one? What would my rating be?

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  13. Mike,

    Sorry to tell you but given the nonsense you spout, the lack of evidence, the inanity of your ideas:


    I would give you an F - for FOOLISH.

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  14. Well Said, Bob.

    This blog has gone off the rails. I think Mike has realized he can't fool us to think he's an ignorant ex-pat liberal anymore who is spouting bullshit about guns because he doesn't know anybetter.

    Now he's just attempting to troll.

    Possibly another mentally ill old man like Muddy.

    This shall be my last post.

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  15. don't leave Weer'd Beard.......

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  16. Sebelius has said she supports Kansans’ right to own firearms, but does not believe a broad concealed carry law would make them safer: “I don’t believe allowing people to carry concealed handguns into sporting events, shopping malls, grocery stores, or the workplace would be good public policy. And to me the likelihood of exposing children to loaded handguns in their parents’ purses, pockets and automobiles is simply unacceptable.”

    Hmm, so Sebelius doesn't want people to carry concealed because it won't make them safer?

    I'm really glad this story turned out okay, but isn't it an example where concealed carry could have insured the lady's safety?

    Purse Thieves, Don't Mess With This Grandma Victim chases man, hits him with car

    A 65-year-old grandmother says she chased down a man who had just snatched her purse, hit him with her car and held him until police arrived.

    A 65-year-old grandmother from Fort Worth, Texas, says she was "madder than hell" when her purse was stolen while shopping near an Office Depot.

    "I was madder than hell is what I was," Val Renfro said. "I didn't think about anything else except, 'He's not going to get away with this.'"


    She used a 2,000 pound weapon to help stop a criminal, but Sebelius doesn't believe this lady should be allowed to carry a more effective weapon, incredible.

    Renfro had just finished shopping at Office Depot on Eastchase Parkway in East Fort Worth on Sunday afternoon and was getting in her car when Ricky Lee Sample stole her purse, she said.

    That store is literally just a few minutes away from my house. I've shopped there many times, so has my wife....but crime happens elsewhere, right? The odds of something bad happening are very slim, right?

    "The next thing I know, somebody just blindsided me,” Renfro said.

    She grabbed her cell phone, which she carries in her bra, and called 911 as he fled.

    "Someone just grabbed my purse out of the car," she told the operator. "I’m going to chase him down."

    Renfro said she got in her car and screeched out of the parking lot. She spotted the man in front of a nearby movie theater.

    Her confrontation with the man was recorded in her 911 call.

    "Where’s my purse?" she yelled. "You give it to me now. I got the police on the phone right now. You give me my purse."


    We go to that movie theater about 50% of the time when we go to movies. But things like that don't happen in real life or do they?

    Sample tried to walk away, she said.

    "And I thought, 'I'm going to lose this man, and the police aren't here,'" Renfro said. "So he got right in front of my right fender, and I just pushed on the gas."

    She said he flipped up in the air.

    "I hit him," she told the 911 operator.


    Pay attention to several key facts in that quote....the police aren't here. How many times have we heard that the police will protect you, that you should let the professionals handle it. This criminal attacked the woman by reaching into her car and taking her purse, fled....and the police weren't there.

    Next we have the fact she hit him with the car....in some states that would get her charged with a crime. And it was an ineffective weapon because even after flipping into the air, he walked away.

    Sample kept running, she said.

    Like a scene out of a movie, customers leaving the theater joined in the chase.

    "Now there’s others chasing him," Renfro told the 911 operator.

    Jason Hughes, who was at the movie theater, said it was "pretty crazy."

    "When somebody says she just got robbed, and you see a guy running at you with a purse, it's kind of like the first reaction," he said.

    Several other people also joined in and corralled the man.

    "They’ve got him,” an excited Renfro told the operator.

    Police arrived minutes later and arrested Sample in connection with the theft.


    If I had been there, would I have joined in the chase, yes. How about you Mike, would you help someone else out?


    What if running wasn't the only thing on his mind, what if he wanted to take a hostage....simple strength could have allowed him to do that, even a knife. But people like you Mike and Sebelius want to keep people from being able to effectively help.

    Police arrived minutes later and arrested Sample in connection with the theft.

    She's on the phone with the police dispatch, it has been several minutes already, the criminal is captured by civilians (Hurray for them) and still it is several minutes before the police can get there.

    Sample, 47, has previously been convicted of thefts, burglaries and drug possession.

    Note the PLURAL used in the convictions, theftS, burglarieS...maybe some people can't be trusted in society, eh?

    Later, when she saw the man again outside the police station on his way to jail, he apologized, Renfro said.

    "Apology accepted," she replied. "God bless you."


    Her forgiveness and attitude is a strong testimony to what is great about America. She didn't stand for a crime being committed, didn't depend on the government to bail her out, she found help from her neighbors and still has the strength to forgive.

    And this is the type of lady that you and Sebelius want to leave at a disadvantage?

    Your push to restrict guns because of a very minor portion of all firearms "flow" to people who commit crimes is causing people like this to be at a disadvantage.

    Are you proud of your actions, your words Mike?

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  17. Bravo Bob S.!

    Sadly I suspect MikeB will give us some version of his standard answer. Anything less would mean he'd have to accept that his entire belief system is faulty.

    oh, and bravo to that woman and the citizens who cared enough to help.

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  18. Bob asked, "If I had been there, would I have joined in the chase, yes. How about you Mike, would you help someone else out?"

    I honestly don't know what I would do in a situation like that. I think I would try to help someone if I could, but my physical condition is more or less like yours Bob. I don't think either of us is good for too much running. This is where we could use Weer'd, he's just turned 30 years old.

    You asked, "What if running wasn't the only thing on his mind."

    Well, that's what you carry the gun for, right? What if he turned and made a threatening move for the woman in the car which looked just like he intended to kill her with his bare hands but in reality was just meant to scare her off. Is that when you pull the gun and blow him away? You'd have to. You'd have no choice, right?

    You wanna play the "what if" game, Bob. Go ahead, but I think the world is less safe with guys like you running around with your guns. Why can't you disagree with me without resorting to name-calling and insults? Could it be that deep down under all the bravado, you suspect I'm right after all? Otherwise, why do you get so upset if you know your right?

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  19. I probably wouldn't join a mob chasing a purse-snatcher if I am armed. I am not armed to protect property, especially not other people's property. I applaud the people that did chase him down, assuming they did not use too much excessive force in detaining him.

    In my state, after she hit him with a car my right to intervene with deadly force is compromised--If it is ruled that she became the aggressor, my affirmative defense for shooting him is gone.

    On the other hand, if he appears to be harming her first, it doesn't matter if it is an act or not--I'd have the right to stop him. I don't have much sympathy for people who mug old ladies. Again what I would do depends on circumstances--Likely I'd give him a chance to let her go and flee. I'd be unlikely to judge against someone else who shot a perp who was "merely pretending" to assault someone, especially in the midst of another crime.

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  20. Mike,

    Seems like honest answers.

    I honestly don't know what I would do in a situation like that.

    Some of the best advice I learned as I started to take responsibility for my own safety was this deceptively simply phrase.

    Decide what to do when THIS happens, not IF THIS happens

    It means think through your responses to likely situations, decide how you are going to respond WHEN that situation happens. Depending on an IF scenario means a person has to decide IF that situation matches what (s)he thought about, usually vaguely thought about.

    Is that when you pull the gun and blow him away? You'd have to. You'd have no choice, right?

    I always have a choice to fire or not. Sometimes it may be the best of the bad decisions possible, but the choice and responsibility is always mine.
    People aren't mindless drones nor are we eager to kill, for myself it is the next to last thing I ever want to do. The last thing I want to do is regret not trying to defend myself, my family to the best of my ability.

    Your push to "restrict the flow" of firearms makes it more likely, not less, that I would have that regret. The push to disarm people, to enact commonsense gun laws means that more people like this lady can't afford firearms and the cost to carry.

    Go ahead, but I think the world is less safe with guys like you running around with your guns. Why can't you disagree with me without resorting to name-calling and insults?

    What names did I call you in this post? Or are you reacting to the post where you question gun owner and if our desire to carry is based out of fear??

    Who is calling names and resorting to insults Mike?

    I've disagreed with you quite often without resorting to name calling, without resorting to snide insinuations, can you say the same?

    Could it be that deep down under all the bravado, you suspect I'm right after all? Otherwise, why do you get so upset if you know your right?

    Could it be that I'm tired of you insulting people like Weer'd and not answering for it?

    Could it be that I'm tired of you trying to strip us of our rights?

    Could it be that I'm tired of you not answering questions that get difficult, lying about why you are doing this, lying about what is said, lying and questioning our motivations?


    How about answering some of the questions I posed in my earlier comment, they aren't rhetorical.

    I'm really glad this story turned out okay, but isn't it an example where concealed carry could have insured the lady's safety?

    Note the PLURAL used in the convictions, theftS, burglarieS...maybe some people can't be trusted in society, eh? (okay, maybe that one was rhetorical but it goes against your let's treat most criminals as a victim mentality)

    And this is the type of lady that you and Sebelius want to leave at a disadvantage?


    Most importantly:
    Are you proud of your actions, your words Mike?

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