Thursday, April 28, 2005

One Down, Millions To Go

This man will likely be pulling his child out of the public school system (henceforth known as collectivist education camps).

We was arrested for refusing to leave a meeting after demanding that the school notify him before presenting homosexual material to his SIX YEAR OLD!

Yes, it's that bad and it's just one more reason why no child belongs in one of these gulags.

If you still have children in a collectivist education camp, please remove them. Even if they only have one year to go, get them out; there is still time

Reading History

I've been getting more interested in reading historical works but I have a little problem and I'd like your opinion.

First of all, I realize that all history books are not only slanted but incomplete. My question is this:

How do I choose a history book that is reliable or the least unreliable?

For instance, a book written by a Muslim on the holocaust might be an interesting read but I am unlikely to get an accurate depiction of that tragedy. That's an easy one. What about a book on WWII? How should I know who's point of view of that war to trust?

Writers are biased, it's hard to deny that. When writing a historical work, a writer has to choose which facts to keep and which to leave out. Which historical point of view gets the most coverage?

Your thoughts on this subject are welcome.

Open Source Books

Bruce Bethke, over at The Ranting Room was kind enough to kick around the idea of developing an open source book on his blog. If you're not familiar with the open source software movement, you know where Google is.

Anyway, if you're an aspiring writer, and have some ideas for The Greatest Sci-Fi Novel of All Time, drop in and take a look.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Why is this news?

This is stupid. A horse died on a movie set and it warrants a 356 word article?

Cutting edge journalism at its finest.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Private Censorship

It appears that Apple, Inc. is retaliating against a book publisher that will be releasing an unauthorized biography of Steve Jobs.

After unsuccessful attempts at persuading publisher John Wiley & Sons not to release "iCon Steve Jobs: The Greatest Second Act in the History of Business," Apple, Inc. resorted to pulling other books by that publisher off of their Apple Store shelves.

This is certainly a stupid thing to do from a PR standpoint for apple and the publicity will only benefit the publisher but is such censorship wrong? Absolutely not!

**FULL DISCLOSURE: I'm not a Mac owner but I'm not rabidly anti-Mac either.

This is a business that is trying (but failing miserably) to protect itself from criticism. They are perfectly within their rights to censor materials within their own stores. This not censorship in terms of 1st Amendment rights as some might argue.

I've heard people complain of violation of 1st Amendment rights because a newspaper refused to print a particular story or a radio station wouldn't allow a point of view to be heard. 15 years ago, when I first started studying the red herring of "seperation of church and state" I ran across a case where a magazine salesman threatened a convenience store owner (who was a Christian) with a lawsuit because he refused to carry Playboy and Penthouse magazine in his store. The magazine salesman claimed it was censorship. Sadly; the store owner capitulated.

Follow this Google search and look at the number of instances Walmart is accused of censorship for not selling certain rap CD's etc. There are people that actually believe that WalFart doesn't have the right to censor what it sells!

I practice private censorship all the time. You have the right to speak your mind but you don't have the right to make anyone else listen to you.

The Case Against Public Airwaves

Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) will be introducing a bill soon that will speed the adoption of HDTV.

He wants to REQUIRE all television broadcasts to be digital by December 31, 2006 and that the analog spectrum be returned to the public (read government) to be used by emergency services etc.

The net effect of this bill is that analog TV sets will be useless without a conversion box because there will be no signal to recieve. Furthermore, he suggests that middle to low income households should get a rebate (taxpayer subsidized) on the conversion boxes.

I am upset about this but not seething with anger. First of all, I don't watch broadcast TV, neither do I have satellite or cable TV. I rent movies once in a while; that's about it. This isn't about TV; it's about liberty.

The government shouldn't own the airwaves in the first place. This article from the Mises website gives a rock solid argument against government ownership of the airwaves. The aforementioned article is also an excellent primer on private property rights.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Prayer Requests

1) Update: She died last night. Her brain damage was severe and she just couldn't hold up. Now there are 4 boys without a mom and a very distraught father who has to take care of them. Please keep them in prayer. A friend of mine who is going through a divorce, found out that his wife and kids were just in a very bad car accident.

The kids are ok but the wife has some serious head injuries and in surgery as I write this. They don't know if she's even going to live. If she does, there is a very good chance that she'll have major brain damage.

They have four boys ranging from 11 to 18. Please pray for the wife, her name is LaRae.

2) As I was typing the first prayer request, my roommate told me about a guy that's working for him who is Marine Reservist and slated to go to Iraq some time in the next couple of months.

He was already worried enough about leaving his wife behind and then he found out that a platoon from his unit that is already deployed was ambushed in Iraq.

Please keep them all in prayer.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Jane Got Juiced

Hanoi Jane got a face full of tobacco juice at a book signing in Kansas City, MO. The woman is, without a doubt a traitor. The man stood in line with a mouth full of chewing tobacco specifically to spit it in her face.

His big mistake though was running away. He should have stood his ground, berated her publicly and waited for the police to show up and arrest him; for that I would have had respect for him but he ran, so I don't.

Is this any different in substance to what happened to Ann Coulter? A pansy boy attempted to throw a pie at her at the University of Arizona and was beat to a pulp by audience members.

I would argue that there is a differnce. Hanoi Jane played the traitor during a war; she aided the enemy. Ann Coulter is just a pundit who publishes her opinions. At least the guy who spit on Fonda didn't miss. The wuss who threw the pie at Coulter barely grazed her.

New Blog

Please pay a visit to PsyClops Lair, the blog of ajw308, a frequent contributor to a number of other blogs.

Visit the blog, leave a snide comment and tell him to switch to Haloscan.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

It's OK To Be Fat!

It looks like being a bit overweigh is ok afterall.

This article gives the details. Note: Just because the government says it, doesn't make it true but it sounds reasonable to me.

Last fall, my fat carcass weighed close to 235. Today I'm a svelte 207. Ideally, I'd like to be about 185 or, if I was working out, 200 would be great but I'd look lean and mean.

I'm almost 5'11' so 200 pounds would work well for me. I have a lot of muscle in my legs and my calves are like tree trunks which contributes to the fact that I look a lot lighter than I am.

If I actually got back down to 185, I'd have to buy all new clothes.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

You Might Be In A Persistent Vegetative State If...

Inspired by a comment on Wes' blog watch golf, tennis or fishing on TV. think George W. Bush is a conservative. have been watching the Michael Jackson case with interest. think that Islam is a peaceful religion. think income taxes pay for anything but the interest on the national debt. believe that Tim McVeigh blew up the OK Federal Building with a poop bomb. are convinced that the public schools have the best interest of children at heart. think that "the people" mentioned in the First Amendment of the Constitution are different than "the people" mentioned in the Second. think that the problems of society can be solved if we just let the government have more of our money. believe Terri Schiavo should have had her feeding tube removed.

Feel free to add your own in the comments.

Friday, April 15, 2005

Back to the Beginning

This afternoon, I went down to the park where my wife and I got married about six and a half years ago. There's now a park bench on the place we stood and said our vows.

I remembered vividly what my wife looked like on that pleasant August morning by the ocean. As I sat there, I recalled how she walked across the grass with her father at her arm and she approached me. I cried that day; I was overwhelmed by her beauty and I was sure of her love for me. I sat there and looked where our families and friends sat and how they smiled and cried as we exchanged vows; pledging ourselves to each other and to God for the rest of our lives.

Today, all I could do was pray. There was no woman standing there, no friends and no family. The only one that showed up to be with me today was God. And so I talked to Him and I pleaded with him to restore our marriage and make us whole. I asked him to fight for the covenant that we made with him and to soften the heart of my wife toward me and God.

Pray for us that our marriage might be restored.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

CAIRing For Terrorists

The Council on American Islamic Relations, believed by many (including me) to be a front group for Hamas terrorists, had a little setback today.

One of the founding members of the Texas chapter of CAIR was convicted of funneling money to Hamas leaders through a computer company.

I get the daily email from CAIR though I rarely read it anymore. It used to be entertaining; now it's just pathetic. According to their daily briefing, it seems that any time a Muslim is accused of a crime or involved in anything negative, he's being oppressed by hatred toward Muslims. It just gets boring after a while hearing them whine like that.

Only 3 member of CAIR have been convicted of material support of terrorism since 9/11. Given the high level of incompetence of in our intelligence services, you can bet that there is a heck of a lot more going on in their organization that we don't know about.

Head Off To Mormon Country

This story gives me some hope for our economy and our dependence on foreign oil.

It seems that there are enormous oil reserves under Utah and Wyoming. The problem is, the oil is difficult to extract and refine.

The story detail the possible involvement of the Fed to get this jump started now that it's economically feasible to do so.

Getting the Fed involved would be the worst thing that could happen.

The best thing that could happen is that the Fed could turn this land over to the states and let the states either sell it to private parties or lease it to the oil companies. I'm sure the EcoFreaks would have a cow over it and probably try to blow up the refineries etc. Politically speaking there is no way we're going to get out of this without huge concessions from the environmentalists. They're going to be absolutely rabid about it.

One of the good things that could come from the discussions over this is that the environmental lobby might concede to allow drilling in ANWAR rather than in the lower 48. If they were smart, they'll throw that on the table when the time comes. Another terrorist attack or two though and the public is going to be clamoring to turn the Middle East in to a sea of glass even if we get a lot of our oil from them. That will bring pressure to bear on getting our domestic oil pumped out of the ground.

One thing I can see happening and I almost hate to bring it up is that some dumb Republican will float the idea to have total Federal control over this oil supply and replace the income tax with the revenue from it. They would promise low oil prices and an abundant supply for many years to come. The Democrats might even buy in to it. At first, all would be as promised and then both parties would start playing politics with it. They vote to add a couple cents a barrel to pay for some important program. Then the flood gates would be open and we'd have very expensive gas. The environmental lobby would be at work full time trying to get prices raised to pay for remediation to the area no matter if any damage was real or imagined.

If we can develop these fields in fairly short order (5 to 7 years), by the time they're even close to being depleted, we'll have developed better energy technology and it won't be much of an issue.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Long Lost Brothers

I had a long conversation on the phone last night with the Digital Cowboy; and it seems that we must be twins, seperated at birth.

He's actually a couple of years younger than I am and I have no idea what he looks like but we seem to be almost exactly alike in our thinking on just about every subject we covered from marriage, children, politics and religion. We even have similar career backgrounds. We seem to be at roughly the same level of intelligence (or stupidity depending on your point of view) and we both exhibit strong symptoms of adult ADD/ADHD.

Very strange indeed. Very cool, but very strange.

I'm just plain mean

Ok, this isn't really mean but it's amusing.

I work in a small office and the girl that works here frequently forgets to turn off her little rock fountain before she goes home at night. If the water were to run out, the pump would burn out.

This afternoon, she forgot to unplug it again. She's going to be upset in the morning. I found a power cord that looks just like it, and plugged that in where her fountain is normally plugged in.

When she goes to plug it in, she's going to see that she left it plugged in but the water's not running and her precious little fountain will appear to be broken.


I have played jokes far more devious than this one but I thought I'd share it with you.

Share your stories.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Abuse by Proxy

I can understand trying to make excuses for behavior, especially when that behavior could mean getting the death penalty but this is just nonsense.

This story provides details about the Army Sergeant who is accused of two counts of first degree murder and three counts of attempted first degree murder is putting forth the defense that he could not possibly be guilty of first degree murder because he was mentally ill due to his (now follow this carefully) step-father's abuse of his sister.

That's right folks, you can now claim the insanity defense because your sister was abused!

Sergeant Hasan Akbar has admitted to the murders and faces the death penalty if convicted.

The man committed murdered his fellow soldiers during a time of war. The only possible excuse I can think of would be some sort of very recent trauma such as a head injury or exposure to a bio agent.

There has been a lot of discussion over on Vox's blog about the the death penalty. I'm increasingly uncomfortable with the death penalty; I have no problem with it when it comes to such betrayal during a time of war. In fact, he should have had his trial and been in front of the firing squad by now given that the murders happened two years ago. The military is usually quicker about stuff like this but they have become more sensitive to media exposure and political correctness.

Blogathon for Bane

Hey everyone, let's help out Bane and his family who are going through a bit of a rough spot because of medical emergencies etc.

Check out this blog for details. Give early, give often!

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Disgust and Compassion

I found myself in a situation this evening that filled me with disgust and compassion simultaneously.

I was with my daughter at a Denny's (I know, that was my first mistake) and we needed to use the bathroom. We walked in and there was a man in a wheel chair, homeless from the looks of him, completely naked except for an unbuttoned shirt. He was washing himself with a rag.

Fortunately, my daughter didn't see much nor understand what was going on but I was pretty thoroughly disgusted to find a naked man in the bathroom (one doesn't even expect these things at Denny's) of a restaurant.

On the flip side of it though, I realized that this man didn't really have many options and I had compassion for him. What was he supposed to do? I wasn't angry and it wouldn't even have bothered me as much as it did except that my daughter was there too.

All of you good liberals out there are jumping up and down and shouting, "We need more government programs! We need more tax money to help people like this!"

I contend that the proliferation of government programs and the corresponding confiscation of money from the public are partially to blame for the lack of facilities available to a man like him. We now have the mentality in this country that the poor and indigent are the responsibility of the government. It is not the duty of government to care for such people.

Limited government would, by it's silence on the matter encourage more private charity. After all, if we could keep more of our income, we'd have more to give to charity and as Americans, we've shown that even in tough financial times we are the most generous citizens on Earth.

Who's responsibility is it to take care of these people? It's your responsibility. It's also mine. The church in America has utterly failed such as these. Even secular charity in the United States has been historically generous and those programs conceived in error quickly evaporate. The opposite can be said of a bad government program, they keep throwing good money after bad because there is no requirement for actual results.

The compassionate thing to do then is to strip government of it's power to provide welfare so that we, as individuals and communities can best decide how to take care of the needy.

Until that day, I will remain disgusted.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!

This story highlights the absolute stupidity of the current incarnation of good portions of the general public.

This man was arrested for paying a fee at Best Buy with $2 bills.

I'll cut them a little slack; I can understand a little scrutiny in this case but arrest? The guy wasn't trying to hide anything, he gave them a very plausible story as to why he had the bills. He never should have been arrested. For that matter, the police never should have been called.

Stupid, just plain stupid.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Carter Not Going To Pope's Funeral

The peanut farmer isn't going to be among the official delegation to the funeral for Pope John Paul II according to a report on Drudge.

No doubt, Bush was fearful of Carter pushing to oversee the election of the next Pope.

Information Meltdown

Once in a while I get concerned about the sheer volume of information that we only have stored electronically. While I'm certainly no Luddite nor do I fear the Third Wave; I sometimes think the world would be a better place if we held back a little on our technological progress.

My real concern has more to do with what we can't control than what we can. What would happen if, for instance, we had a massive wave of solar flares that reversed the magnetic polarity of Earth? It's happened before but not since before the industrial age. Such an event would have a devestating effect on our modern society; nearly all of our technology would be useless and much of it would be destroyed outright.

There are other things that could cause massive information loss as well such as an EMP bomb over a little town like New York City or Los Angeles or, God forbid, a coordinated attack over the 10 largest cities in America simultaneously.

I realize we are still printing massive amounts of information but that has declined and will continue to do so as the methods for digital distribution improve. The other key to decline of print media will be an improvement in the devices we use to actually read. If I have the choice, I still prefer to read an actual book rather than something on my computer.

How would we recover from a massive loss of information? Is it possible to prepare for such a loss without incurring a huge expense? An information meltdown would certainly be a boon for civil liberties because government can't control what it doesn't know about. What a pity that would be.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Firefox Blocks More Popups

CNet is reporting that Firefox is now blocking more popups.

You can download the extension here.

If you're not familiar with Firefox, it's a great alternative to Internet Explorer and there are tons of extensions and themes which make it very customizable.

There have been some reports of spyware coming through Firefox but very, very little. I have had no spyware problems since I started using it and neither have most of my clients.

Happy browsing!

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Jesus Was Not A Homo

This story would be almost funny if it was not so sad. The controversial Anglican Bishop Gene Robinson who left his wife and children to take up with his homosexual lover is now suggesting that Jesus was gay.

What did the people that chose to elect him Bishop expect? Did they think that he would be just like them except that he has anal sex with a man? Did they really expect him to uphold 'traditional values' and preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ in a manner worthy of his post?

In a PBS interview after the consecration of Bishop Robinson, he said: And I do solemnly engage to conform to the doctrine, discipline, and worship of the Episcopal Church.

I might be going out on a limb here but I really don't think that Episcopal doctrine holds that Jesus was butt f***k**g his disciples.

Oh, does that offend you? It should; that's what this Bishop is trying to tell us; just in light, airy words.