martes, 19 de septiembre de 2017

Seeing through a rhetorical trick |September 19, 2017|MercatorNet|

Seeing through a rhetorical trick

|September 19, 2017|MercatorNet|







Seeing through a rhetorical trick

The question in Australia's plebiscite is skewed towards a Yes vote
Brendan Triffett | Sep 19 2017 | comment 5 



Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry? This is the question which is being put to Australians at the moment in a postal plebiscite. Voters have only two options: Yes and No.
We should not be influenced by the fact that one way of voting is expressed positively, as a “Yes”, and the other way of voting is expressed negatively, as a “No”. On a superficial level, it might seem that a “Yes” vote embodies a positive human attitude —a more open, life-affirming stance— compared to a “No” vote.
But that is only a trick of language.
Perhaps you think of yourself as a “Yes” person overall. Perhaps you place a high value on open-mindedness, on optimism, on enthusiasm, on being receptive to new things, on being progressive. Perhaps you believe it’s a good thing, even imperative, to embrace life in all of its richness, to welcome life, to make way for the new.
That alone might persuade you to vote “Yes”. After all, you want to be a “Yes” person, and you think being “positive” is always better.
But what if the question had been been, “Are you in favour of traditional marriage?”
The fact that someone is on the “negative” or “against” side in a debate does not by itself make that person a “negative” person, someone who is pessimistic and closed.
After all, those who are in favour of redefining marriage are for that reason against something—the traditional understanding of marriage. And those who are against redefining marriage are for that reason for something—the traditional understanding of marriage (in most cases at least).
Those advocating for same-sex marriage have the rhetorical advantage. They are able to associate their cause with a “Yes” and condemn the opposition as being nay-sayers.
But we need to see through this bias as we consider the question. We need to look beyond the trick of language, which makes “Yes” appear brighter and more positive. 
Whichever way you vote, you will be a “nay-sayer”. If you vote for same-sex marriage, your Yes will amount to a whole series of Nos. No, you do not recognise the rights of a child to have a Mum and a Dad. No, you do not recognise the rights of parents to educate children as they see fit. No, you do not recognise any right to religious freedom on this matter. No, you do not think there is anything particular special about the traditional marriage arrangement. No, you do not take seriously the common wisdom of the vast majority of people through the vast majority of centuries.
In the plebiscite on same-sex marriage, No means Yes, and Yes means No.
Brendan Triffett holds a doctorate in philosophy from the University of Tasmania and specialises in metaphysics and meta-ethics. He currently works as a lecturer at Alphacrucis College, Hobart.


MercatorNet

September 19, 2017

To illustrate our fascinating lead article today, a book review of the memoirs of the German philosopher Dietrich von Hildebrand, I found an image of Austrian schoolgirls ecstatically greeting a German soldier. He and his comrades had just arrived in Vienna to annex their country. It was March 12, 1938, the end of Austrian democracy and the beginning of seven years of horror.

What fascinates me is the rapturous joy on the faces of the girls. They are deranged with delight, overflowing with love for the Anschluss – and their new leader, Adolf Hitler, was filled with love for them. “There met me such a stream of love as I have never experienced,” he recalled. In a plebiscite a few weeks later 99.7% of the besotted voters voted Yes to annexation by Nazi Germany.

One of the slogans in Australia’s own plebiscite is “Choose Love, Vote Yes”. Perhaps my eyes are failing, but the same girls seem to appear in the rallies for same-sex marriage in Sydney and Melbourne. Both events remind me of the old saying: “Be careful when you follow the masses. Sometimes the M is silent.” 




Michael Cook
Editor
MERCATORNET
Uncanny parallels
By Andrew Mullins
The critique of a German theologian of Nazism is relevant to today's struggle against gay marriage
Read the full article
 
The downstream costs of maximising daycare
By Nicole M. King
Ear infections surge in children who start daycare early.
Read the full article
 
Seeing through a rhetorical trick
By Brendan Triffett
The question in Australia's plebiscite is skewed towards a Yes vote
Read the full article
 
The enduring power of Mosul’s rich and diverse past
By Stephennie Mulder
For centuries, Jew, Christians and Muslims lived together in uneasy harmony
Read the full article
 
Are we artificially breeding ourselves infertile?
By Marcus Roberts
An Australian scientist is concerned we might be.
Read the full article
 
Happy 308th birthday, Dr Johnson
By Michael Cook
Google honours a great lexicographer
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Shotgun wedding? Forcing religious vendors to participate in wedding ceremonies
By Eric Rassbachand Hannah Smith
Counsels for a case in the US Supreme Court outline their argument.
Read the full article
 
‘Don’t let your children out of your sight’
By Barbara Lilley
When government is the helicopter parent.
Read the full article
 
MERCATORNET | New Media Foundation
Suite 12A, Level 2, 5 George Street | North Strathfield NSW 2137 | AU | +61 2 8005 8605
Seeing through a rhetorical trick

The downstream costs of maximising daycare |September 19, 2017|MercatorNet|

The downstream costs of maximising daycare

|September 19, 2017|MercatorNet|







The downstream costs of maximising daycare

Ear infections surge in children who start daycare early.
Nicole M. King | Sep 19 2017 | comment 



The News Story: 'Help Is On the Way' for Toronto Families Waiting for Childcare Subsidies
Mayor of Toronto John Tory pledged recently that “help is on the way” for families who can’t afford to send their children to day-care centers. 
The Mayor made the comments during a ribbon-cutting ceremony for a newly renovated and reopened day-care center in Toronto’s Scarborough district. Reported a Toronto news station, “Tory touted the city’s latest addition to its pool of city-owned childcare spaces is ‘progress’ but acknowledged that more needs to be done to alleviate the families who either cannot afford the growing cost of childcare or haven’t been granted a spot or subsidy.” “This particular centre,” the Mayor said, “is especially important . . . because it falls within the Scarborough Village neighbourhood where there is a high density of apartments and multiple family households and where 27 per cent of families are single-parent led families.”
Although it certainly wasn’t his aim, Tory unwittingly let out the big secret that progressives like to hide: as families fall apart, government intervenes to pick up the pieces. Alas for Big Brother, the system of day-care subsidies leads to other costs further down the road. 
(Sources: Rachael D’Amore, “‘Help on the way’ for Toronto families waiting for childcare subsidies, Tory says”, CTV News, August 31, 2017.)

The New Research: Subsidizing Day-Care—The Medical Costs
Government officials around the world recognize the direct budgetary cost of subsidizing the day-care centers now caring for millions of young children. What they might not realize is how putting these children in day-care centers is driving up medicals costs borne by both parents and governments. But two new studies—one from Denmark, one from South Korea—underscore the medical cost of the global rise in single-parent and/or working-mother homes.
Lauded by progressives around the world for its extensive system of day-care centers, Denmark now claims international prominence in a way it may not welcome: doctors now surgically insert ventilation tubes in ears in a higher proportion of young children in Denmark than they do in any other country on the planet. Such tubes are typically inserted only after children have repeatedly suffered from middle-ear infection (otitis media). 
Denmark’s unparalleled rate for the insertion of ventilation tubes was recently documented by a team of researchers affiliated with the University of Copenhagen and Denmark Universite Paris Descartes. After analyzing data for all Danish children who had ventilation tubes inserted in their ears between the 1st of January1997 through the 31st of December 2011, the researchers concluded that “nationwide the prevalence of VT [ventilation tube insertion] was 24% in children aged 0 to 3 years, with a significant increase over the study period.” In contrast, the researchers note, “in the United States [only] 6.8% of children have had VT before the age of 3.” The researchers indeed acknowledge that Denmark now has “the highest incidence [of such surgical insertions] recorded in the world.
Why does Denmark now stand out in this dubious way? The researchers identify a family history of middle-ear disease and the presence in the home of older siblings as predictors of ventilation-tube insertion. But they also acknowledge another significant cause, one raising questions about progressives’ enthusiasm for Danish reliance on non-maternal child care. The researchers report “early start in daycare” was associated in their data with an increased likelihood of ventilation tube insertion” (p = 0.0577), hardly an irrelevant association for this analysis given that “in Denmark, children are typically attending daycare centers within the first year of life.”
What the Danish scholars have established in their recent investigation harmonizes all too well with the findings of a recent study in South Korea on “the prevalence and economic burden of OM [Otitis Media] in Korea.” In Seoul as in Copenhagen, researchers looking at children suffering the ill effects of middle-ear infections end up looking at—and asking hard questions about—day-care centers as a substitute for maternal care.
Affiliated with Kyung Hee University and CHA University School of Medicine, the authors of the new Korean study parsed data from national health insurance claims for 2012. These data indicate that for the year in question 1,788,303 Korean patients received medical treatment for otitis media. The scholars calculate that the burden of treating all of these patients totaled 497 million US dollars, mostly the direct cost of the medical care itself but partly “indirect costs” such as “work-loss costs.” By way of comparison, the researchers note a 2004 study concluding that “the annual economic burden of OM in the US is approximately 3–5 billion US dollars (USD), although the real cost may be higher, because of underestimated indirect costs.” Though the total cost of treating middle-ear infections may run considerably lower in Korea than in the United States, with its much larger population, the Korean researchers stress that the economic burden incident to middle-ear infection in their country is still “substantial”:  “The economic burden of OM,” they point out, “accounted for more than half of the burden of breast cancer.”
But in Korea as in Denmark or any other country, middle-ear infections mostly occur in children.  Children under the age of nine years accounted for more than half (60%) of the patients identified in the Korean analysis and for more than half (55%) of the total consequent cost.
And like their Danish colleagues, the authors of the Korean study interpret their findings in part by relying on previous research showing that “daycare attendance is a significant risk factor for A[cute] OM.”
Because of the dominance of day-care-affirming progressive ideology in higher education, it must have taken some courage for the Korean scholars to wonder about “the Korean government . . . increas[ing] its funding of daycare centers, with approximately 77.3% of <5-year-old children attending a daycare center.” These scholars even have the temerity to call for “further research . . . to evaluate how promoting daycare may affect the prevalence and burden of OM.”
Middle-ear infections and the medical treatments required to treat them constitute but a small part of the harm inflicted by the global substitution of day care for maternal care. But asking straight questions about even that small part of the harm may start the overdue discussions—in Europe, in Asia, and around the globe—about just what burdens governments are placing on their people by promoting nonmaternal child care.
Nicole King is the Managing Editor of The Family in America. Republished from The Family in America, a MercatorNet partner site. 
(Source: Bryce Christensen and Nicole M. King, forthcoming in The Natural Family. Studies: Tine Marie Pedersen et al., “Incidence and Determinants of Ventilation Tubes in Denmark,” PLOS ONE 11.11 [2016]: e0165657, Web; Young-Eun Kim et al., “The Economic Burden of Otitis Media in Korea, 2012: A Nationally Representative Cross-Sectional Study, “ Biomedical Research International 2016 [2016]: 3596261, Web)
MercatorNet
September 19, 2017

To illustrate our fascinating lead article today, a book review of the memoirs of the German philosopher Dietrich von Hildebrand, I found an image of Austrian schoolgirls ecstatically greeting a German soldier. He and his comrades had just arrived in Vienna to annex their country. It was March 12, 1938, the end of Austrian democracy and the beginning of seven years of horror.

What fascinates me is the rapturous joy on the faces of the girls. They are deranged with delight, overflowing with love for the Anschluss – and their new leader, Adolf Hitler, was filled with love for them. “There met me such a stream of love as I have never experienced,” he recalled. In a plebiscite a few weeks later 99.7% of the besotted voters voted Yes to annexation by Nazi Germany.

One of the slogans in Australia’s own plebiscite is “Choose Love, Vote Yes”. Perhaps my eyes are failing, but the same girls seem to appear in the rallies for same-sex marriage in Sydney and Melbourne. Both events remind me of the old saying: “Be careful when you follow the masses. Sometimes the M is silent.” 




Michael Cook
Editor
MERCATORNET
Uncanny parallels
By Andrew Mullins
The critique of a German theologian of Nazism is relevant to today's struggle against gay marriage
Read the full article
 
The downstream costs of maximising daycare
By Nicole M. King
Ear infections surge in children who start daycare early.
Read the full article
 
Seeing through a rhetorical trick
By Brendan Triffett
The question in Australia's plebiscite is skewed towards a Yes vote
Read the full article
 
The enduring power of Mosul’s rich and diverse past
By Stephennie Mulder
For centuries, Jew, Christians and Muslims lived together in uneasy harmony
Read the full article
 
Are we artificially breeding ourselves infertile?
By Marcus Roberts
An Australian scientist is concerned we might be.
Read the full article
 
Happy 308th birthday, Dr Johnson
By Michael Cook
Google honours a great lexicographer
Read the full article
 
 
Shotgun wedding? Forcing religious vendors to participate in wedding ceremonies
By Eric Rassbachand Hannah Smith
Counsels for a case in the US Supreme Court outline their argument.
Read the full article
 
‘Don’t let your children out of your sight’
By Barbara Lilley
When government is the helicopter parent.
Read the full article
 
MERCATORNET | New Media Foundation
Suite 12A, Level 2, 5 George Street | North Strathfield NSW 2137 | AU | +61 2 8005 8605
The downstream costs of maximising daycare

Are we artificially breeding ourselves infertile? |September 19, 2017|MercatorNet|

Are we artificially breeding ourselves infertile?

|September 19, 2017|MercatorNet|







Are we artificially breeding ourselves infertile?

An Australian scientist is concerned we might be.
Marcus Roberts | Sep 19 2017 | comment 



Ten years ago, one in 35 Australian babies were born as a result of IVF treatment. Today, that number has tracked to one in 25 babies. In the Netherlands, one in 15 births is as a result of IVF treatment. Now, world-renowned Dr John Aitken, the University of Newcastle laureate professor, the director of the University’s Priority Research Centre for Reproductive Science and the 2012 New South Wales Scientist of the Year, is warning us of the dangers of overreliance on IVF.
It seems that male children born of IVF procedures are themselves more likely to require IVF to reproduce. As Aitken notes:
“It’s an inexorable upward trend. We are taking recourse to IVF in increasing numbers and the thing we have to remember as a society is that the more you use assisted conception in one generation, the more you are going to need it in the next…There’s a negative pay-off. If you have a son from this process it is possible that he too will have the same pathology that you had.”
The trouble is that already, without interference, the human male is not very fertile: one in twenty males are infertile. Dr Aitken criticises the IVF industry for ignoring the fact that failure to conceive stemmed largely from male infertility problems. And aside from the increased incidence of infertility, male IVF children are also at greater risk of cancer if their fathers smoked and used assisted conception techniques.
But, as Aitken notes, society is now out of kilter with human biology. Women are at their most fertile at around 19 or 20 years’ old, but at that stage of life most are halfway through university and nowhere near starting a family. Instead, many are putting off having children, getting financially secure and then having to resort to IVF in their late 30s when they cannot conceive.
“The average age of women in IVF is 36/7 years. If you're contemplating a family when you're close to the edge, IVF cannot fix you up. IVF live birth rates decline from 35 to 42 exactly the same way in naturally conceived population.”
Do we really think that we can keep on relying on technology and scientific breakthroughs to mask the deficiencies of our current lifestyles? Do we really think that doing so won’t result in something having to give in the future? Perhaps not in the next generation, but perhaps the one after that, or the one after that when more and more of us rely on IVF to “fix” our problems that are either caused by us delaying having a family, or because our parents had us through IVF… Now imagine a society where not only are our birthrates failing to keep up to hte level required to keep the population stable, but where more and more men are naturally infertile. Where we rely on IVF more, and thus perpetuate the cycle.


MercatorNet

September 19, 2017

To illustrate our fascinating lead article today, a book review of the memoirs of the German philosopher Dietrich von Hildebrand, I found an image of Austrian schoolgirls ecstatically greeting a German soldier. He and his comrades had just arrived in Vienna to annex their country. It was March 12, 1938, the end of Austrian democracy and the beginning of seven years of horror.

What fascinates me is the rapturous joy on the faces of the girls. They are deranged with delight, overflowing with love for the Anschluss – and their new leader, Adolf Hitler, was filled with love for them. “There met me such a stream of love as I have never experienced,” he recalled. In a plebiscite a few weeks later 99.7% of the besotted voters voted Yes to annexation by Nazi Germany.

One of the slogans in Australia’s own plebiscite is “Choose Love, Vote Yes”. Perhaps my eyes are failing, but the same girls seem to appear in the rallies for same-sex marriage in Sydney and Melbourne. Both events remind me of the old saying: “Be careful when you follow the masses. Sometimes the M is silent.” 




Michael Cook
Editor
MERCATORNET
Uncanny parallels
By Andrew Mullins
The critique of a German theologian of Nazism is relevant to today's struggle against gay marriage
Read the full article
 
The downstream costs of maximising daycare
By Nicole M. King
Ear infections surge in children who start daycare early.
Read the full article
 
Seeing through a rhetorical trick
By Brendan Triffett
The question in Australia's plebiscite is skewed towards a Yes vote
Read the full article
 
The enduring power of Mosul’s rich and diverse past
By Stephennie Mulder
For centuries, Jew, Christians and Muslims lived together in uneasy harmony
Read the full article
 
Are we artificially breeding ourselves infertile?
By Marcus Roberts
An Australian scientist is concerned we might be.
Read the full article
 
Happy 308th birthday, Dr Johnson
By Michael Cook
Google honours a great lexicographer
Read the full article
 
 
Shotgun wedding? Forcing religious vendors to participate in wedding ceremonies
By Eric Rassbachand Hannah Smith
Counsels for a case in the US Supreme Court outline their argument.
Read the full article
 
‘Don’t let your children out of your sight’
By Barbara Lilley
When government is the helicopter parent.
Read the full article
 
MERCATORNET | New Media Foundation
Suite 12A, Level 2, 5 George Street | North Strathfield NSW 2137 | AU | +61 2 8005 8605
Are we artificially breeding ourselves infertile?