October 21, 2005
Cotillion Tuesday is Friday here!
Yep, late late late, but not gone or forgotten. Final voting for King of the Cotillion -- pics over the jump, poll on the right sidebar.
We have the top four candidates in the final round, ready for objectification! Some of the photos will have changed at their request, as you will see, but you can still
ogle check out the pictures from last week HERE.
Let the objectification begin!
First, we have MacStansbury, Beth's co-writer at MVRWC and proprietor of the excellent MacStansbury.org blog. MacS hates this picture because he was exhausted and "covered with sand," but we like that he was showing his USM pride in the middle of a live combat area:
Next up, and also dashing in his desert camo, is Thunder6 from 365 and a Wakeup, beamed in from the front lines in Iraq where he is now. In this photo he sits with a little Iraqi girl who is waiting at the medical clinic:
B.C. didn't dig up his photos with him in his flight suit from his days in uniform, but he provided a more current photo, this one showing him enjoying the good life--beer-drinking on a boat--and looking not so torturous away from the Imperial Dungeon™ at the Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler:
Also in a sunny paradise is Bullwinkle from Random Numbers. Bullwinkle may be a big ol' moose, but he likes little furry animals other than just squirrels. Here he's feeding a baby coati mundi that he rescued, now just a couple weeks old.
There you go, y'all! The Final Four! Now go on over to their sites, poke around, and most importantly, VOTE (in the sidebar)! You can only vote for ONE this time, but you can still vote every day. Voting will close on SUNDAY NIGHT again, around midnight (Central time), and the winner will be announced and crowned King of Cotillion / Cotillion Beefcake? on TUESDAY.
Thank you from all of us in Cotillion to all the guys who participated last week--we consider all of you our Princes for participating and for supporting us!
Yes, still here
Myriad of things have kept me from my 'puter the last few days. Mostly boring, niggling little things. Catching up in progress.
October 17, 2005
Women in the United States are second class citizens
Topic now open for debate. Give it your best argument, affirmative or negative and remember:
Assertion is not argument.
Theocracy in the United States?
I mean, how can we take seriously the war against al-Quada's goal of achieving the installation of a Caliphate -- defeating dar ul Harb and making the world dar ul Islam -- when a president of the United States insists on saying:
And yet the same revolutionary beliefs for which our forebears fought are still at issue around the globe—the belief that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state, but from the hand of God.I mean, it's the same thing. Right?
October 16, 2005
Adventures in Parenting -- flashback
Take a close look at this picture, circa December 1955:
Large tv on small table.
Exposed powercord and antenna wire.
Lead tinsel on Christmas tree.
Small town decorations under tree.
18 month old girl within easy reach of all.
Ain't it a wonder how many kids did make it to adulthood from those times when the phrase "childproofing" was unknown?
Yes, that is a picture of me.
October 15, 2005
CA Prop 73 - Parental Notification
I'm voting YES So, I'm a parent, sue me. I have little patience for people who believe that minor girls have any right to a medical procedure sans parents. Why should abortion be treated any different than a whole host of other issues we generally trust parents to take care of?
Jay Tea at Wizbang discusses a similar law in New Hampshire.
WTF are you doing in Los Angeles?
Democrat Loser Kerry, I thought I recognized your foul stench when your plane landed at LAX
October 14, 2005
To the 'it was staged!' rabble
(h/t Mac at MVRWC)
Busy busy busy!
Or, as grandma would, say "I'm busier than a one-armed paperhanger."
Siobhan is done with mid-terms and is flying down to spend the weekend with us. To that end the house will be full, especially Saturday as all gather here for noshing and chatting (and watching USC v Norte Dame --- hmmm, is there anybody who takes exception to ND using the Irish as mascotts?..sorry I digress). I've got Halloween costumes I'm trying to sew (oooo... watch out, a few gender-feminists are now sharpening their harpie knives) and just the normal Friday evening of babysitting the twins.
I'm working on a essay coming out of the very involved discussion in the comment section of a post by Jill at Feministe. Via Jeff Goldstein, Jill had an interesting post about about domestic violence in Saudi Arabia, but ended the post with the usual gratuitous Americans do it, too tedium. What I took away from the hoohaw is a desire to write about how so many of the commenters at Feministe were all about bashing anyone that disagreed that The Patriarchy in America is the reason for any ill that befalls women. One particular commenter wouldn't even brook the notion that women can be violent against their partners. I found such a position rather fascinating, and following the link to that commenter's own "livejournal" I noticed she was a "feminist" in about the same way a Kluxer is part of the "civil rights" movement. More to follow.
In line with that, take a moment to read Mieke's post I am the Bored Elite Bull in a China Shop. IMO, I think she was a little out of line in her approach, but I think she makes some valid cultural points. My personal social beliefs are closer to hers, but if someone wants to live differently, they are happy doing so, and nothing immoral/unethical/illegal is going on -- hey, whatever floats yer boat, I won't try and change ya. Oh, I'll give you an opinion if you ask for it, but I'm not about to make you stop doing what gives you pleasure.
October 13, 2005
Zawahiri-Zarqawi agree - 'Either you're with us, or you're with the terrorists'
CentCom has the communique from al-Qaeda's No. 2, Ayman al-Zawahri, and offers a succinct analysis of seven themes. Do read the whole thing. There is nothing really new in the letter; at least to those of us who have taken Islamism and its radical fascist threat seriously for the past four years. al-Qaeda is not in Iraq to help Iraqis, but to conquer them in their long-term goal of establishing a new Islamist Caliphate (which includes the destruction of Israel). What cannot be repeated often enough (because it will be ignored and/or dismissed by the usual members of the MSM)
“I say to you: that we are in a battle, and that more than half this battle is taking place in the battlefield of the media. And that we are in a media battle in a race for the hearts and minds of our nation.”From ANSWER to NION to Mommy Sheehan, those are the people al-Qaeda consider their tacit allies on the road to the Caliphate.
October 12, 2005
Riddle me this
The license plate frame on my eldest daughter's car reads "My other car is an ambulance." She's been driving one for a little over five years now, since she first started in EMS. She's been very lucky (and she is a very skilled driver) that she has only been in a couple of fender benders. This is partially due to the procedures that no matter how critical the patient is, no matter that the sirens are on and the lights are flashing, they MUST stop at all intersections with red lights and at stop signs, making sure the intersection is clear before proceeding through.
Because today, people either don't pay attention or they intentionally ignore emergency vehicles with sirens. I don't know why -- is it just because of the general lack of politeness that has gripped our society? Is it because the concept of "duty" is sneered at by portions of the populace and self-described intellectsia? Is it because people figure they can "get away" with it?
I'd love to figure it out. You see, late yesterday a fine, young motorcycle officer of one of the agencies I work with was responding to an accident scene with full sirens and lights when a car pulled out in front of him in the middle of a block.
He leaves behind a wife, three young daughters and lots of devastated fellow officers. This same agency lost another motorcycle office only one year ago under similar circumstances.
We filed a felony case today on a man who attempted to hold up and rob a train.
With a bow and arrow.
October 11, 2005
Blogger Babes UNITE -- Voting time!
Welcome to the revamped Cotillion Ball, featuring a smaller but select best writing distilled from the Cotillion Babes -- this week hosted by A North American Patriot, one of our newest Cotillion bloggers! Please welcome, too, our newest member, Romeocat from CathouseChat.
As I told you last week, we're letting our hair down and have invited the guys over to be objectified. We present the Inaugural Edition of our own Blogger Babes competition for
Oogling of the nominees begins over the jump. See the bottom of the post for further details, including the voting (which is featured on the sidebar).
(most photos can be clicked for full-size)
(The Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler)
Retired Geezer(Blog Idaho) with his wife
(and someone you might know in the middle)
Jay (Stop the ACLU) - with family
Please vote over in the sidebar. You may PICK MORE THAN ONE, but hey, let's not get crazy and pick every single one!Next Tuesday, we will have FINALISTS, at which point you can vote again. This vote, again, is for the FINALISTS. Next Tuesday, is the final vote for King of Cotillion!
The prize: Bragging rights, massive and multiple linky love, and what the hell, I'll toss in a free Blogad for two weeks if you want it.
Voting this week ENDS SUNDAY NIGHT around midnight (CST) or something. Beth is known to keep stupid hours, so it could be 4am.
To the guys participating? You know we just LOVE y'all to pieces for this!
October 10, 2005
Revealing Quote of the Day
"I've been sailing through high school with D's, and now that it has changed, I have to work a lot harder."And some wonder why the hell I dare question the "public" school Education Establishment.
I've been moved up the Blogger Interview schedule at Basil's Blog. I'm excited I've been asked to participate and if there is any question you'd like me to answer in the course of the interview, go to the first link and click the "You ask the Question" link in the column to the right of my name.
Questions for me end 10/28 with the interview posted on 11/6.
Columbus Day -- the fight over history
In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue.
There's hardly an American adult alive who didn't learn that mnemonic as a grade schooler.
Today there's hardly another historical figure that is such a flashpoint of competing views, from Visionary Hero to Degenerate Villain.
An interesting look at the holiday, rather than the man, comes from the LA Times:
But whichever way you come down on the Columbus debate, here's the good news: Columbus Day in the United States is not really about Columbus anyway. Nor is it about 1492; in fact, it's about 1892, the year President Benjamin Harrison issued the proclamation establishing a day to honor the "400th anniversary of the discovery of America."The writer, Stanford Prof. Sam Wineburg, goes on to say the late 1800's was a time of unprecented immigration, and by 1910 Italians constituted "10% of the nation's foreign-born population." As the Italians, along with the Irish, Poles and Portuguese, were looked upon with suspicion and hostility by the American Protestants --
Catholics badly needed a hero. And what better symbol to mobilize and Americanize these immigrants than one of their own? Columbus — discoverer of the New World but born in the Italian port city of Genoa — was a logical choice. As an editorial in the 1878 Connecticut Catholic put it, no one was more deserving "of grateful remembrance than the great and noble man — the pious, zealous, faithful Catholic … Christopher Columbus."Here was an attempt to help integrate a mass of immigrants into the American Experiment, to add their traditions and heros to the ever growing and changing American culture.
Some would have Columbus as the symbol for all White Evil™, not only here but in the world. As a racist professor at Kent State rants
At the outset, it must be stated quite clearly that we Afrikan people, are the original, majority people with original ideas. Europeans are only an inherited, transmitting global minority people. Europeans did not invent, create or discover culture nor civilisation; they just inherited them and in some cases, stole them. ...In an act reminiscent of the Taliban blowing Buddahist statues or radical athiests trying to destroy the Mt. Soledad War Memorial in San Diego, supporters of Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez destroyed a 100 y/o statute of Columbus in Carracas on 10/12/04.
Christopher Columbus ... the contemporary world's first serial killer, murderer, despot, criminal and genocidal maniac, besides being an unabashed liar and thief.
Columbus was a symbol of pride for immigrants who needed a hero, and Columbus is a symbol for political identity purposes to castigate and denigrate anything European or "white."
However, somewhere between the polarizing screeds lays the historical act of a single man, driven by his own motives, to sail into the unknown. An act which changed the world.
October 09, 2005
Hillary Clinton -- a question
Oh for heaven's sake... Hillary is "inducted" into the Women's Hall of Fame
The hall, which opened in 1969, acclaims women who have made valuable contributions to society and especially to the freedom of women.What the heck has Hillary done that has contributed to the freedom of women? In fact, I'd say her not serving divorce papers on Billy Jeff actually contributes against the notion of a self-reliant woman with a good sense of self-respect.
A challenge and an answer - running a school
Hrubec (s/he of many names) in the comment section here rails in perfect Mrs. Lovejoy fashion "But what about the children!" against anyone at any time trying to hold the Education Establishment responsible for their failures. S/he took particular exception to my statement:
Most in the trenches teachers just want to teach. I give kudos to the fine ones I've met and worked with all these years. But the bad ones, the incompetent ones, are coddled and protected AND their effect on children lasts for years.S/he went on a rant about the poor, underpaid teachers. I pointed out a few fiscal facts about LAUSD ($13.3 BILLION budget with 746,000 students) and said I could easily run a school with a budget of $17,800/student and have money left over. His/her reply
So DO IT, foolWell, a cursory run about the internet, a few major points addressed and I present a working budget just over the jump.
Let's do the property first. If I decided to lease space, it would be considerably less, but I'd have to spend time vetting on whether or not it was appropriate for k-6 and getting stuck on arguing that point with Hrubec. So, for today's example let's say I'm going to have 100 students, 25 to a classroom, 8 teachers with Master's Degrees. My budget is $1.78 million for the traditional school year. Here is a school for sale in Los Angeles. Fully school permitted, fully furnished and kitchen equipped for $2,250,000. Let's assume a 30 y/r mortgage at 5% = $12,000/mo pmts.
8 Teachers @ $80,000-----$640,000
1 Office clerk------------$28,000
2 Cafeteria personnel-----$56,000
(repair, replace, etc) $178,000
I have over $500,000 to cover utilities and insurance and other expenses I haven't covered.
Easily? Yes, easily.
Things that make you go 'Whaa..?" - fun edition
As they say, movies are made in the editing room. Someone has a great deal of fun with putting together a new trailer of Kubrick's The Shining. This time as a "feel good" movie.
Awesome. May take a bit of time to load, but it is a must see.
Mary Mapes - 'Truth and Doody'
You all remember Dan Rather's and the rest of the 60 Minutes Lite clan's politically transparent and pathetic attempt to pass off fraudulent memos to help the Kerry campaign? One would think that after the Chappaquidick-like slap-on-wrist-let's-all-put-this-behind-ourselves aftermath, that Rather, et al, would have thanked their Supreme Being of choice and quietly avoided any further mention.
Egotism coupled with psychosis doesn't work that way.
Dan Rather popped up on Sept. 19 to weep and rend his garments about the new journalism order and pretending for his ingenuous audience that it was the White House that brought him down, not his own malfeasance.
Human-embarrassment Al Gore follows Dan's lead and on Oct 5, rants and dissembles, about the evils of an unfettered Internet reviving his "digital brownshirts" slander and defending poor Dan.
Now, Rather's erstwhile producer and conspirator, Mary Mapes, is coming to the Psychotic's Picnic with a book to explain how she been done wrong. See, dear reader, the fault does not reside within her, it resides within bloggers
"I was incredulous that the mainstream press -- a group I'd been a part of for nearly twenty-five years and thought I knew -- was falling for the blogs' critiques. I was shocked at the ferocity of the attack. I was terrified at CBS's lack of preparedness in defending us. I was furious at the unrelenting attacks on Dan. And I was helpless to do anything about any of it."Ahhh...poor baby. She was "helpless". And this isn't the only excerpt where feelings trump all. Baldilocks rightly wonders about the excerpt where Mary, now caught with spoiled goods, confesses:
The little girl in me wanted to crouch and hide behind the door and cry my eyes out."Baldilocks says, "Maybe it’s me, but, that is just weird." No, it's not just you. It's not only weird but frankly embarrassing, because it plays to all the "hysterical" stereotypes of women in positions of power. Women as pure creatures of emotion, women as untrustworthy of positions of authority because they won't own up to their mistakes. Mapes reinforces the latter with this bit of sheer chutzpah in attempting to rehabilitate the fraudulent memos:
--"Faxing changes a document in so many ways, large and small, that analyzing a memo that had been faxed -- -in some cases not once, but twice -- -was virtually impossible. The faxing destroyed the subtle arcs and lines in the letters. The characters bled into each other. The details of how the typed characters failed to line up perfectly inside each word were lost."Thankfully, Charles Johnson reposts his devestating demonstration of just how poorly these purported 1970's era memos were created. As Charles says in response:
... she’s arguing that faxing a typewritten document from the 1970s is more likely to make it appear as if it were printed with modern proportional typefaces, and would alter the spacing to exactly match a Microsoft Word replica.Mary Mapes is taking a page from "performance artist" Karen Finley, except Mapes is not symbolically smearing herself with chocolate.
October 08, 2005
Saturday reading -- exploding head edition
Sometimes there are things I read that make me want to scream in frustration.
Jay Tea at Wizbang takes one incident and demonstrates how two different papers cover it. Specifically, the Boston Globe tosses out a sobsister feature glamorizing the "tragic" story of a man in a wheelchair, and then the Boston Herald gives you the facts on the man -- an unrepetant and notorious gangbanger.
In the continuing saga of some atheists bound and determined to Bowdlerize California of all public and historic symbols that are perceived to be religious, California Conservative has the latest update on anti-democratic, screw the voters action on the Mt. Soledad war memorial.
UPDATE: Smash, a San Diegan, has some beautiful pictures of other historic and public symbols that the JudeoXtianphobes could easily petition to have destroyed if this judge's ruling stands.
Pamela at Atlas Shrugs quite properly raises the alarm that the EU, in concert with China and others, is just going to unilaterally take over the Internet rootservers from the US/ICANN. Understand, the only way they can actually DO that is by political proclamations and United States cooperation with these thieves. What I'd love to see is a little demonstration to these idiots by having us cut 'em off at the knees for a few hours by shutting down all the routers going into/outside the US. Next time they start blathering about OUR invention as a "Global resource" that demands "International government control" (yeah, the UN, EU, Iran and China have such respect for free flow of data!) let's tell 'em we'll discuss it when the world's "oil" is put on the table for International control, too.
Jeff Harrell makes a brief appearance during his hiatus (hi Jeff! Miss you!) to make the pithiest response I've seen yet over this year's derisory Nobel "Peace" Prize.
When did the Nobel Prize become an A-for-effort, everyone’s-a-winner mockery of itself? Oh, right. Arafat.
October 07, 2005
Free Speech advocates of the Left
Here are some of Ed Schultz's tacit peeps in action.
SHORELINE - Ken Potts calls himself a patriot. That's what his front yard tells you too.Yes, Mr. Potts. Sad and very revealing.
Metal American flags are staked in the ivy beside the driveway. A red, white, and blue pinwheel spins near the front sidewalk. One flagpole flies the American flag. A second flagpole carries the banner of the Army's 101st Airborne. ...
But he says that in the last year the mailbox has been blown up twice with fireworks. The house has been egged. Paint has been thrown on the house too. The flags have been torn down and ripped up more than once.
And the 101st Airborne flag has had the word "murder" and a swastika written on it with a permanent marker.
"It's really difficult for me to see something like this and not feel sad," Potts told us of the vandalism that started around election day last year. Especially, he says, since the 101st led the charge in World War II to defeat Nazi Germany.
But the biggest insult to this house with a permanent Bush-Cheney placard attached to the second story and a collection of mostly Republican election signs in the side yard, is the spray paint someone left on his vinyl siding this past weekend.
In two-foot tall letters on the side of his house facing Meridian someone painted "Bush Nazis." ...
This former soldier with three tours of Vietnam says he feels like his own freedom of speech is under attack.
"When you have someone or a group of people who want to take that away from you, who probably didn't do a thing to defend them in the first place, it's really sad."
Air America's Ed Schultz - proving bullies really are cowards
Yesterday I posted on the "progressive" radio host out of North Dakota, Ed Schultz. Today Ed spent a portion of his morning show calling Dennis Prager a "liar" and that Dennis should get "his fat ass" up to North Dakota.
Yesterday, while Ed was on air chortling to his audience that he would debate Dennis, Ed's producer emailed Dennis' producer that Ed would not debate him. Ed's adolescent posturing this morning consisted, even after Ed talked with Dennis' producer, of slandering Dennis as a "liar" because Big Eddie, himself, didn't say he would not debate Dennis.
Outside of the profanity-laced, reality-challenged harangues Ed dishes out, one quickly sees why Ed wants to avoid debating Dennis.
Dennis would, with his usual polite but laser-like logic and clarity, wipe the floor with Ed without breaking a sweat.
Who is Ed? A jock who spent 15 years as a sportscaster and then took the airwaves as a shock jock. He is the typical Biff Tannen bully believing muscles trump intellect everytime. What, really does Ed have to match Dennis -- a man who is an author, documentary film maker, lecturer and teacher? A man with a 23 year successful track record on the radio?
Of course, a question that Dennis got from his listeners this morning was "Why bother?" As Dennis explained, because libel is a particular hot button for him. Dennis is co-author of a definitive book on anti-Semitism, Why the Jews? He points out that libel against Jews -- especially unchallenged -- was pivotal in creating a climate of hate and evil directed against Jews. Dennis is passionate about speaking out against libel. Dennis is not partisan in his passion, even writing a column in the Wall Street Journal in defense of Hillary Clinton against charges of anti-Semitism.
It is highly misleading to probe private comments for evidence of anti-Semitism, racism, bigotry and sexism. The present trend emanates largely from a lethal combination -- the totalitarian temptation inherent in contemporary liberalism, and the media's sensationalism.Ed continues with his bully behavior while, as typical of bullies, ducking any confrontation where they can't be in 100% control -- definition of a coward.
Oh. Last point. Big Eddie might want to lay off the "fat ass" remarks if his pictures are any indication of his affinity for beer and porkfat.
I hate being sick
never liked it as a kid, even if it meant staying home from school with warm milk and cinnamon toast.
Worse as an adult. When my kids were small I didn't catch a break at all. Ok. Save for the time I came down with the chicken pox at age 33. FINALLY I was sick enough I was allowed to wallow in my itchy and high fever misery without someone saying "Dear? Can you ...?" "Mommy? Where's my ...?" Now I lay abed at home feeling bad and mentally grumbling over all the other things I could be doing if I was well.
October 06, 2005
Howard Dean and the salami ...
... The gift that keeps on giving
Well, certainly the president can claim executive privilege. But in the this case, I think with a lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court, you can't play, you know, hide the salami, or whatever it's called. He's got to go out there and say something about this woman [Harriet Miers] who's going to a 20 or 30-year appointment, a 20 or 30-year appointment to influence America. We deserve to know something about her.BWHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
(h/t Kevin at Wizbang)
'Progressive' coward - redundant phrase? with UPDATE
On his show, Ed Schultz said the following:What has gotten Eddie's progressive tidy whities in a bunch is Prager's concluding line after examining all the calls for Bennett's head after being libeled by people like Schultz:
"Racism is not a virtue; and this is the guy who wrote the book on virtues!"
"The Christian right in this country considers abortion murder; this is not about abortion -- this is about extermination."
" . . . He's out there advocating the murder of all black babies so that we can bring down crime."
And finally, Schultz compared how Bennett views blacks to the way Nazis viewed Jews.
Here is a chance to find out if your liberal brother-in-law is a leftist without integrity or simply a decent guy with different values. Just ask him, "Will you condemn the libel of Bill Bennett?"Ed Schultz said on air he would debate Dennis Prager. But when Prager's producer called to follow up on the challenge and make arrangements, the Schultz show refused.
Dennis has made a definitive statement on air today he'll go to North Dakota, on his own dime, to debate Schultz live, no tape editing.
Email Ed and ask him why he says one thing on air and another thing off air.
UPDATE Dennis Prager points to an example of a decent liberal
Actually, it is Reid and the others who should apologize to Bennett. They were condemning and attempting to silence a public intellectual for a reference to a theory. It was not a proposal and not a recommendation -- nothing more than a possible explanation. But the Democrats preferred to pander to an audience that either had heard Bennett's remarks out of context, or merely thought that any time conservatives talk about race, they are being racist. The Democrats' obligation as politicians, as public officials, to see that we all hear the widest and richest diversity of views was suspended in favor of partisan cheap shots. (The spineless White House also refused to defend Bennett.) Because I came of age in the McCarthy era, I have always thought of the Democratic Party as more protective of free speech and unpopular thought than the Republican Party. The GOP was the party of Joe McCarthy, William Jenner and other witch-hunters. Now, though, it is the Democrats who use the pieties of race, ethnicity and gender to stifle debate and smother thought, pretty much what anti-intellectual intellectuals did to Larry Summers, the president of Harvard University, when he had the effrontery to ask some unorthodox questions about gender and mathematical aptitude. He was quickly instructed on how to think.
'Intelligent Design' is not religion, but it does not belong in science class
Rightwingsparkle points to this story about a lawsuit in PA concerning parents contending that "Intelligent Design" in a textbook is an establishment of religion in a government classroom. A fuller article on the parameters of the suit can be found here. The textbook, Of Pandas and People, at the center of the controversy, is not required reading but was suggested to students if they wanted to know more about ID. The lawsuit focuses on the requirement in these particular high school biology classes that they announce that ID is an alternative to Darwin and concludes this is teaching intelligent design effectively promotes the Bible's view of creation.
ID doesn't belong in science class. Period. It is not religion, but it is a philosophical view of the origin of life. HOWEVER, it should go without saying, an a-theistic explanation of the origin of life also doesn't belong in science class. The mechanics of evolution, dna, the fossil record, carbon dating, etc, are all science. Trying to explain who/what started everything -- ID or randomness -- is a matter of philosophy and both belong in a philosophy/comparative religion class.
Maybe rather than lawsuits it would be a better use of time and money to require the same hours devoted to philosophy courses as it does to science courses. Certainly it would give kids a greater appreciation of Western Civilization.
Oops. Western Civ. "Dead White Men." Would the ACLU fight that one, too?
October 05, 2005
If one is going argue the merit of proposed law
wouldn't be nice to actually know the proposed law? Via Jeff Goldstein comes a story from Feminista who runs with the "analysis" of a proposed change to Indiana law dealing with artificial reproduction. But you might be forgiven if that isn't your first thought when reading this from the blog post Feminista links to
The Crime of "Unauthorized Reproduction"However, a reading of the actual proposed law reveals something very different than the hysteria of
New law will require marriage as a legal condition of motherhood
this is essentially an Unauthorized Sexual Intercourse bill.OR
Just a misdemeanor, understand, in their compassion they are distinguishing themselves from the Taliban by not recommending execution as penalty, for the woman, naturally, boys will be boys and all that.
As long as they can tell women, “You are legally barred from getting pregnant without a man’s permission” (either by him physically ejaculating in you and/or marrying you), everything is a-ok. **and that's just a silly statement, because if you "get [deliberately] pregnant" without the male's consent that can, and should, constitute fraud.
Yes, the .pdf is 22 pages long, but the assertions about the law just seemed too far out, even for politicos who can't help but tinker in areas that should be off limits. So I started slogging through it.
The focus is not on "controlling women" or jailing unwed mothers. The focus seems to be an attempt to deal with the related issues of parenthood, adoption, gestational mothers, genetic parents and babies as commodities.
Agree or not with Indianna legislature, it is not unreasonable when the courts have had to deal with wrenching cases of a child borne to parents not at all genetically connected with the child then having the genetic parent(s) also claim the child, to want to craft law to anticipate and to take action before such issues arise. Such cases are not much different than the adoption debacles where parents might have their child for years only to have a genetic donor show up and claim, by blood, the child...and win as in the infamous Baby Richard case. Especially now as women can bear children not genetically connected to them, a whole other dimension filled with potential danger to the child involved rears its head.
So, disagree with Indianna's decision to put artificial reproduction on the same plane as adoption -- with requirements of certification of intended parents by a licensed child placing agency, the limitation of any compensation to donors beyond cost of actual donation, the termination of all rights and responsibilities of donors -- but don't believe it is some sort of anti-female stealth law.
Argue, if you will, whether Indianna is too strict in restricting this quasi-adoption to married couples and proposing to charge any PERSON (not "woman") violating the law (page 21) with a misdemeanor. Those are reasonable objections. I personally believe they are too strict, even as I agree with some of the proactive protections geared towards the resultant child.
But the rest? The "taliban" remarks? The silliness that women can reproduce WITHOUT men?
Sheesh. Emily Litella lives!
October 04, 2005
The Cotillion -- mixin' it up and a call for beefcake
Got everyone's attention? Good. In a plethora of carnivals that abound, we gals of the Cotillion have decided -- since we are pretty unique in that we DO talk with each other behind the scenes -- we are going to mix things up a bit. We offer up a distilled version of the Cotillion Ball here along with host Grey Tie today as we work on streamlining our weekly offerings.
In addition, the Cotillion Gals are issuing a call to those male bloggers out there to stand up and impress us! As Beth at MVRWC explains we want a family-friendly but imaginative picture of YOU. We'll be posting them, asking for votes and the winnowing down the field to the hunkiest male blogger of the bunch.
Your prize? A ton of female attention and linky love!! So email me, or Beth, with a fun pic and a few words on what you think will impress us about your bodacious blog!
Sometimes the gals like to kick off the high heels and really let loose. Come join the fun!
October 03, 2005
People like this weary me
Rightwingsparkle posts a story about a man short on tolerance and long on time to create mischief.
Seems said man, after having reproduced (!!!) gets annoyed when offspring comes home from school with a backpack full of the usual ubiquitous flyers and spots one that :::horrors::: has the dreaded "M" word on it.
No. Not THAT one. The word that set our easily-offended male off was the word "Methodist". Now, it wasn't a prayer sheet, nor admonishments that male and family had better get DOWN on thar knees and PRAY! God be PHA-RAISED!. It was just an annoucement that the Methodists were going to run a Pumpkin Patch of Salvation! Praise Jesus!
Oh...nope ...sorry 'bout that. The Methodists are going to run a Pumpkin Patch just in time for Halloween with proceeds going to the Methodist's charitable activities.
See, for Mr. What can I find to get my tidy whities in a bunch about this week? he couldn't quite get past the word "Methodist" on the flyer and felt this was nothing more than another Xtian Stealth Proselytizing Weapon of Mass Conversion. This was nothing more than Forced Religion™, another ...
No. Stop. Enough. I'm done with this Pavlov's poodle who wouldn't have blinked twice at a Pumpkin Patch run by the Red Cross with the proceeds for hurricane relief. I don't even have the energy to jump through the hoops to register at his site to laugh at his religiophobia. After arguing with people about Bill Bennett's remarks (here and there) and being told again and again that I just don't understand that blacks think differently than whites and that makes ME a racist, I'm just chalking it up to planetary alignment, a misaligned autumnal equinox or just plain left-induced-brainrot.
I'm going to go search out a better mood.
October 02, 2005
Perception vs. Reality
Sometimes perception and reality dovetail. Sometimes they diverge. Sometimes the perception is based on an "internal reality" with only the most tenuous connection to the world at large.
I once had a friend, a woman in all other respects but one was a great person to know. She was funny, articulate, educated and reliable. But it came to a point in our relationship where her one "flaw" was so egregious I finally broke off our friendship.
She was, bluntly, fat and everything that happened her in life was filtered through the lense that the world "hates" fat people. That was her "internal reality."
We'd be at a restaurant together and if the waitress spoke to me first, my friend would hiss "See that? She is a bigot. She only spoke to you first because I'M FAT." If the order came to her not to her liking, it was "Because I'M FAT." If she encounted an obnoxious sales clerk, or was cut off in traffic, or was sassed by a teen at school, the only reason it ever happened to her was because of "FAT BIGOTRY"...or as she explained it, "The only acceptable prejudice left." It didn't matter if I was subjected to a harried clerk or a leadfooted driver. I wasn't "fat" so it didn't matter and I could never understand what she went through every day.
Her "internal reality", her perception, didn't match reality. And it only reinforced her perception of "fat bigotry" even when it was her own bitterness and combative attitude that made people draw away. Whatever slings and arrows that daily life flung her way, she had her perception of "fat bigotry" to fall back on, exonerating her of anything that she personally might be responsible for.
When you think of it, such a perception that absolves you of much responsibility of anything ill, any bad luck, that might befall your life is damned tempting. Didn't get that job you wanted? Get snubbed by the counter-girl at Macy's? Get cut-off in the parking lot? Get shortchanged at the supermarket?
Not "that's life", it's because it's really their fault because they hate [persecuted minority de jour].
Tell a person long enough and often enough that said person can't realize their dreams because of THOSE PEOPLE and their deepseated/hidden/subconscious hatred of the person and, by golly, who is surprised when the person's perception diverges from reality?
Someone tried to say that "ignoring" the perceptions of others is bigotry itself.
Let me make this clear. Indulging a misperception is bigotry. Perceptions divorced of reality should not be ignored but challenged.
Suicide 'explosion' in OK
This is disturbing in its implications.
NORMAN, Okla. - One person was killed in an explosion near a packed football stadium at the University of Oklahoma on Saturday night in what authorities said appeared to be a suicide.Of course, Boren said that assuming the suicide's intent was to blow his/herself up OUTSIDE the stadium. Reading on comes something that further belies Boren's assertion that no one was ever in danger.
The blast, in a traffic circle about 100 yards from Oklahoma Memorial Stadium, could be heard by some in the crowd of 84,000, but university President David Boren said no one inside the stadium was ever in danger.
A police bomb squad detonated explosives found at the site of the blast. The area near the stadium was searched by bomb-sniffing dogs.Interesting that this does not make it onto YahooNews headlines or on the Google News headlines. It's listed at the bottom of the "Latest Headlines" panel at FoxNews.com and CNN.com has it listed on its site as "1 dead in blast outside football game".
Is it coincidental that this "suicide explosion" comes not long after the coordinated suicide bombings in Bali?
Color me suspicious.
October 01, 2005
Quick Links - It's about the values Edition
In the wake of Bennett - The refusal to honestly discuss race
No honest look at Bill Bennett's remarks during an on-air discussion of Freakonomics which tries to draw correlation between abortion and crime, would lead one to the conclusion that Bennett was racist. Regardless of how one might personally feel about Bennett as former Drug Czar or conservative commentator, nothing in his past or writings can support the brickbats coming his way over his use of a Swiftian type statement which he then -- and in the same breath -- identifies as a morally reprehensible proposal.
However, the usual race-baiters, race-pimps and those so thoroughly cowed by even a hint of "racial controversy", are all attempting to shut down any honest discussion of issues dealing with poverty, race and crime.
Even liberal Matthew Yglesias isn't buying the "Bennett is a racist because he used the word 'black'" histrionics.
Not only is Bennett clearly not advocating a campaign of genocidal abortion against African-Americans, but the empirical claim here is unambiguously true. Similarly, if you aborted all the male fetuses, all those carried by poor women, or all those carried by Southern women, the crime rate would decline. Or, at least, in light of the fact that southern people, poor people, black people, and male people have a much greater propensity to commit crime than do non-southern, non-black, non-poor, or non-male people that would have to be our best guess. The consequences, clearly, would be far-reaching and unpredictable, but the basic demographic and criminological points here can't be seriously disputed.So why the drumbeat by the usual suspects, not only condemning Bennett out-of-hand to even the unconscionable effort by some members of Congress to get Bennett off the air? Because the race-pimps have completely controlled the discuss for the past forty years and any challenge to their hegemony is met with swift, take-no-prisoners action.
Anyone recall the poor David Howard, a white member of D.C. Mayor Anthony Williams' staff, who was forced to resign after using the word "niggardly" in a memo? It didn't matter that the word has nothing to do with the infamous "n" word. Howard was roundly castigated; first as a "racist", then when it was pointed out that the idiots calling for Howard's head might first like to look at a dictionary, Howard was still castigated for being "insensitive." Howard "should have known" that blacks would be "less educated" to such an "arcane term" and if anyone took offense, it was Howard's fault.
Stupid, and rather racist, reasoning, right? Howard's accusers were 100% wrong but Howard was still at fault for his accuser's wrong perception. The worst of it is, Howard actually agreed with his attackers.
"I sincerely apologize for offending anyone. It was certainly not my intention. Clearly what matters is not my intention but the impact of the words on others.No, clearly Howard, finding himself publically raped, decided he deserved it because his skirt was too short. And too bad Eric Zorn, who wrote the column at the link, also believes perception is more important than reality. Eager to make it known how wonderfully "sensitive" they are to the members of the Church of the Easily Offended, they help perpetuate the kind of grotesque attacks we are witnessing on Bennett.
As I said earlier, this pattern of attack based on perception rather than reality can be traced back to at least 1965 and the reception Daniel Patrick Moynihan received when his paper The Negro Family: The case for national action, written under the auspices of the US Dept. of Labor, was released. Moynihan, a man of impeccable person integrity, honesty, and intelligence, a liberal respected by both sides of the aisle, was thoroughly and completely attacked. As described here
[t]he Moynihan report ... was under attack from all sides. Civil servants in the “permanent government” at Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW) and at the Children’s Bureau muttered about the report’s “subtle racism.” Academics picked apart its statistics. Black leaders like Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) director Floyd McKissick scolded that, rather than the family, “[i]t’s the damn system that needs changing."This revisiting of Moynihan's report and the subsequent seizure of the debate while refusing to deal with race issues honestly is a must read. Here are some startling excerpts:
Moreover, given the fresh wounds of segregation, the persistent brutality against blacks, and the ugly tenaciousness of racism, the fear of white backsliding and the sense of injured pride that one can hear in so many of Moynihan’s critics are entirely understandable.Forty years later, we again allow all discussion of concerning "race" and how it ties in with culture, proverty, crime and values to be the sole province of:
Less forgivable was the refusal to grapple seriously—either at the time or in the months, years, even decades to come—with the basic cultural insight contained in the report: that ghetto families were at risk of raising generations of children unable to seize the opportunity that the civil rights movement had opened up for them. Instead, critics changed the subject, accusing Moynihan—wrongfully, as any honest reading of “The Negro Family” proves—of ignoring joblessness and discrimination.
“The problem is discrimination.” The protest generating the most buzz came from William Ryan, a CORE activist, in “Savage Discovery: The Moynihan Report,” published in The Nation and later reprinted in the NAACP’s official publication. Ryan, though a psychologist, did not hear Moynihan’s point that as the family goes, so go the children. He heard code for the archaic charge of black licentiousness. He described the report as a “highly sophomoric treatment of illegitimacy” and insisted that whites’ broader access to abortion, contraception, and adoption hid the fact that they were no less “promiscuous” than blacks. Most memorably, he accused Moynihan of “blaming the victim,” a phrase that would become the title of his 1971 book and the fear-inducing censor of future plain speaking about the ghetto’s decay.
For white liberals and the black establishment, poverty became a zero-sum game: either you believed, as they did, that there was a defect in the system, or you believed that there was a defect in the individual. It was as if critiquing the family meant that you supported inferior schools, even that you were a racist. Though “The Negro Family” had been a masterpiece of complex analysis that implied that individuals were intricately entwined in a variety of systems—familial, cultural, and economic—it gave birth to a hardened, either/or politics from which the country has barely recovered.The dishonest and self-serving screeching about Bennett's remarks show that we haven't really moved much in forty years.
And those who hold the power in defining this discussion as "It' all Whitey's fault" are not inclined to change.