Talking about the "things that matter most" on August 25
3:00 – Kresta Comments
3:15 – Libya assured “low key” return for Lockerbie bomber. Not so much.
Libya had assured Scotland that it would give a "low key" reception home to the Lockerbie bomber before his release. Not so. He received a hero’s welcome, which just added fuel to the fire that was built on the release of convicted terrorist Ali Mohmet al-Megrahi. Our guest says to expect more outrages like the Lockerbie case in the future, unless the West suffers a catastrophic attack that definitively discredits legalism as a prime weapon in fighting Islamist terror. National Security advisor John Wohlstetter is with us.
3:30 – Paying for Le Treatment: Nothing is free—certainly not French health care.
Recently in the New York Times, mystery writer Sara Paretsky published "Le Treatment," the story of how she took her husband, suffering from chest pains during their vacation in France, to a local hospital, where he was treated without delay. A cardiologist correctly diagnosed the problem, pneumonia, and administered the necessary medication. Our next guest says what she doesn't realize is that the French, too, would love to have such a system. Paretsky's adventure is a parable based on a false assumption: that health care can be public, reliable, and free. It may indeed seem free, or close to free, for an American tourist receiving treatment in an emergency; as a French taxpayer, however, Guy Sorman says he paid a heavy price for Paretsky's husband's treatment. And you, my American reader, he says, did too.
3:45 – A Few Questions on Abortion and Health Care
This weekend, President Obama spent another weekly radio address talking about health care reform. He said he wanted to spend some time, quote, "debunking some of the more outrageous myths circulating on the internet, on cable TV.” One of the so-called misrepresentations he said was the idea that coverage for abortions would be mandated under reform. Meanwhile, across town, the independent, non-partisan, FactCheck.org, was releasing its analysis of the issue of abortion in the health care reform bills. FactCheck.org has now issued its analysis, entitled, "Abortion: Which Side is Fabricating?" What does is conclude? Keith Pavlischek has the answers.
4:00 – Kresta Comments
4:20 – William Wilberforce Celebrates His 250th Birthday
Admirers of 18th century abolitionist William Wilberforce remembered him Monday – the 250th anniversary of his birth date – by reflecting on his life and carrying on the British statemen’s call for the end of slavery. Although Wilberforce was a prolific philanthropist, establishing 69 philanthropies during his lifetime, he is best known for leading an 18-year fight for the abolition of the British Empire’s slave trade, which legally ended in 1807 in England and 1808 in the United States. So why does he not get more attention? Eric Metaxas is the author of Amazing Grace: William Wilberforce and the Heroic Campaign to End Slavery. He joins us.
5:00 – Ban the burqa? Or ban such bans?
French President Nicolas Sarkozy has endorsed the idea of a ban on the burqa. This is the conservative Islamic head-to-toe covering with mesh or a slit at the face that is worn by some Muslim women in public. Mr. Sarkozy called the burqa "subservience," not religious garb. Now the UK is taking up the issue as well. In Iran, the Islamic government takes just the opposite view. Women must be mostly covered – hair, neck, and loose-fitting clothes on the body – as a sign of religious morality. A "spring thaw" from 1997 to 2005 under a reformist president allowed a liberal interpretation of the dress code, but the current president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, revved up the morality police to once again enforce it. It may be hard for an American to fathom – this idea that government would dictate a religious dress code. Why? Because it violates the separation of church and state. It suppresses religious freedom. And in a broader sense, it squelches identity – for isn't fashion (religious or not) a means of self-expression? We revisit the issue of the burqa. Ban the burqa? Or ban such bans? We want to hear from you.