Archive for April, 2009

Whoa, I got a somebody-a-lanche on my Media coverage post.  Don’t know who linked me, but thanks!

Other Opinings:

~  I’ve never understood people who can’t bring themselves to believe in God, but will readily profess that they think The Universe has a plan for them, or that the Universe is trying to tell them something.  I’m sorry, but if thinking that God talks to you means you are a loony, what does thinking that the Universe is talking to you say about your mental stability?

~ This is perhaps the best, most succinct summation of my problems with much of traditional thoughts on evolution in a comment to a post by Professor Bob over at Mitchieville:

Never understood this kind of anthropomorphizing when it comes to evolution:

Evolution is nature’s mechanism for modifying a species over time to suit the local environment.

You should be capitalizing Nature in this sentence, as your are treating is as a proper noun. Nature, in “her” wisdom, “uses” evolution to “modify” species based on her perception of their needs relative to their environment?

Nature is truly a maginifcent engineer, designer and programmer! Wait…I thought this stuff was all random and unguided by anything but happenstance? Selection by reduction and elimination, not by optimized adaptation.

Also, sentient trees?

to whom it provides, deliberately,

How does a tree “deliberately” provide food and shelter to ants? Are you suggesting that it is “aware” of its ant protectors, and conciously makes “efforts” to ensure that they are well-provided for? Where does TreeBeard fall in all this? Or the Forestalls?

I often challenge evolutionists to defend their viewpoints without resulting to anthropomorphic language. Species cannot “adapt themselves” to the environment, unless they can somehow perceive changes in their environment and then encode changes into their DNA based on this input. To date, no mechanism for such a step has been identified.

If an environmental variable changes enough to result in attrition of a species, only those members who, by whatever random mutation have those traits necessary to survive already resident in their DNA will prevail.

For pure evolution to work, Nature cannot “adapt” a species to survive…it will survive merely by the luck of the draw.

Or it isn’t evolution.

I can adapt to my surroundings. If it is cold, I put on a coat. If it is hot, I drink extra water and change to flip flops and hawaiian shirts.   If an animal’s primary food supply suddenly becomes available, it must find something else to eat.  Only those within the species that can already metabolize the new food source will survive.  The others will die off.  Thus, no NEW information is introduced into the DNA, but rather, merely utilization of that which was already there, if dormant.  This is optimization, not evolution.  Survival of the fittest merely optimizes an existing genus, it cannot account for the introduction of a NEW species.

It’s not like the hapless lizard or ocelot, when suddenly faced with a new environmental variable, goes: 

“Hmm, no more catus pears.  Only pomegranates.  Noted.  Got it.  Stand-by.

{{nnnuuugghhhhh…hhhrrrmmmmm…eeeerrrrrrrgggghhh..{{whirl, clank, beep, KA-CHING!}}}}

There!  I am now able to eat pomegranates where before I could only eat cactus pears.  SOUPS ON, HOGS!”

~ Lastly, and completely unrelated to anything previous in this post, I continue to be amazed at the alacrity with which broad swaths of the Prog culture have managed to forget the last eight years of insanely partisan protests charged with high dudgeon and frothingly caustic rhetoric condeming the Bush administration for all manner of crimes against humanity, to include planning and conducting the attacks of 9/11, replete with inflammatory and violent images calling for Bush and Cheney’s respective heads.

Such that now, somehow markedly less strident if not less fervent protests against economic policies which most sane minds would agree will prove our nation’s undoing are greeted with fear, condemnation and clucking reproof by the media and prog commentators.  When the progs do it, no matter how hyperbolic or bellicose, it’s speaking the truth to power, free speech, and standing up for what you believe in!  When anybody else does it….it’s DANGEROUS insurrection which needs to be watched with the utmost suspicion and prudence.

Remember, the only acceptable form of revolution is a Marxist revolution.

Well, on CNN, the Tea Party protests got only one link, but amazingly enough, the article was balanced, fair, and by no means a hit piece.  I encourage you to read it.  It lays out the basics of what the protests are about, and even seems to paint them in if not a positive light, then at least in neutral terms.

Nationwide ‘tea party’ protests blast spending

However.

Let us compare that article to this one from that bastion of journalistic objectivity, MSNBC.

 Anti-tax ‘tea parties’ being held across U.S.
Obama aims to ease dread of deadline day, vowing ‘simpler tax code’

Notice how they manage to toss a puff for Obama into the Headline?

Also notice that the Page Title in the HTML actually says, “Anti-tax ‘tea parties’ vent anger across U.S.”  The anger part becomes important pretty quickly. I’ll just highlight in bold all the fun, inflammatory terms and polarizing language:

Whipped up by conservative commentators and bloggers, tens of thousands of protesters staged “tea parties” across the nation

Whipped up. As in, into a frenzy.  At least they didn’t downplay the numbers, got to give them that.

Protesters even threw what appeared to be a box of tea bags over the fence onto the White House grounds, causing a brief lockdown at the compound before the package was declared not dangerous.

The assumption being, of course, that something the protestors threw over the fence would be dangerous.  Which, if it “appeared to be tea bags”  would, I propose, be a bit of stretch, wouldn’t you think?  Unless of course it fits your narrative.

Shouts rang out from Kentucky,

Looks a bit like “shots rang out,” doesn’t it?

“Frankly, I’m mad as hell,” said businessman Doug Burnett at a rally at the Iowa Capitol, where many of the about 1,000 people wore red shirts declaring “revolution is brewing.”

That’s right.  Angry, red-shirted Iowans warning of revolution.  Hey, maybe that DHS report was right!?

Texas Gov. Rick Perry fired up a tea party at Austin City Hall with his stance against the federal government, as some in his U.S. flag-waving audience shouted, “Secede!”

Not just revolutionists, but successionist as well!  The way this is worded, does it not give the impression that Texas Gov. Rick Perry might tacitly approve this sentiment, as it is “HIS” flag-waving audience?  Not THE audience, but HIS audience.  A subtle but grammatically significant difference.

Other protesters also took direct aim at Obama. One sign in the crowd in Madison, Wis., compared him to the anti-Christ.

Don’t forget rabid, fundie Christians.   “Taking direct aim” at Obama.  I believe they use to call this sort of thing “yellow journalism.”  Now they just call it, well, MSNBC.

Jim Adams of Selma carried a sign that showed the president with Hitler-style hair and mustache and said, “Sieg Heil Herr Obama.”

Must have changed the name on one of the Code Pink signs, I guess.

To be honest, I can’t tell if the penner of this AP piece was simply trying to present a sense of the moral outrage of the participants, but I doubt it.    The use of such charged terms as “whipped up” and “shouts rang out” do more than convey intensity…the suggest a frenzy, the possibility of violence.  Which is at odds with the vast majority of other reporting on the events out there.

The movement attracted some Republicans considering 2012 presidential bids.

Really?  Like who?

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich planned to address a tea party in a New York City park Wednesday night. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal sent an e-mail to his supporters, letting them know about tea parties throughout the state. South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford attended two tea parties.

These three have all expressed interest in running in 2012?  Who knew?

To me, giving cherry-picked statements from isolated firebrands equal time with the more common tone of frustrated but motivated political activism in the name of “balance” really isn’t.  It makes it appear that this undercurrent of revolutionary fervor was a common theme, which it is not.

The TEA Parties are really just about getting the government back on track, under control, and accountable to the people again.  Rather than the other way around.

Folks, all you have to do is look at the pictures from the various Tea Party rallies, and then compare and contrast the pictures over at ZombieTime from a series of Lefty proteests, to see what a fallacy it is to be so cautionary against “conservative” activism.  The Radical Left long ago cornered the market on crazy.

There’s a front-page report on the DHS report highlighting the dangers of “right-wing extremists” in today’s Stars & Stripes,  yet strangely I can find nothing about it on their web site.  I wonder if that was an editorial decision to bury the story?  You can’t unprint newspapers, but you can easily delete a link.

There was some speculation that this report was some sort of clever and complex hoax, but Michelle Malkin confirmed it, and the Stars & Stripes has it front page of their print edition, at least here in Germany.

I think this comes under the heading of “boiling the frog slowly.”  They don’t even mention any “credible threat” in the report.  Just a vague sort of “sense” that economic conditions and a black president “might” foment discord by disgruntled right-wingers and disaffected miliatary veterans.

In other words, there are dangerous points of view out there, against which we must be vigilant.   Viewpoints like, illegal immigration is bad, abortion is wrong, or that the President of the United States shouldn’t be running our civilian corporations or determining what content on the Internet is permissible.

What exactly is it that the Left is so afraid of?  So afraid that they have to villify, marginalize, even criminalize conservative viewpoints?  And more importantly, why are we letting them get away with it?

In keeping with my overall mood of late, I’ve decided to spontaneously create a meme called “Things I Hate,” the first in what it likely to become a regular series of installments, unless I by some amazing miracle get run over by the Perkiness and Happiness Steamroller.  So, without further ado, Things I Hate Hate With The Intensity of 70 Burning Suns Going SuperNova:

- People that call an office phone and let it ring 13 effin’ times.  Folks, most offices these days are pretty small, and if they don’t pick up by the fourth ring, guess what?  THEY AREN’T FUCKING THERE!  Staying on the line for the next ‘leventy rings accomplishes nothing but sending his poor hapless office-mates into a fit of blind seething rage such that if they were ever able to find out who you are, and where you live, they would immediately jump into their car, run on over, and stuff that phone up your ass.  And by “they” I’m sure you realize, I mean ME!

- Also phone related, people who 1) insist on using the speaker phone, and 2) use the speaker phone like it is a window across a busy street, and you are on the other side.  Thus, they have to YELL TO BE HEARD OVER ALL THE TRAFFIC, RIGHT?  BECAUSE IT’S NOT TECHNOLOGY, IT’S A CAN AND A PIECE OF STRING, AND SO I HAVE TO YELL LIKE THIS SO YOU’LL BE ABLE TO HEAR ME CLEAR ACROSS THE EVER-LOVING UNITED STATES.  Folks, technology is real. It works. Most speaker phones are TOO sensitive, such that you can hear some guy fart three cubicles over whenever you’re having that conference call.  So please, speak in a conversational tone, such that I don’t have to come over and pull a Terry Tate on yo ass.

- The word “Di’nt.” You know, as in, “Oh no you DI’NT!?”.  Folks, there are two, count ‘em, TWO “D’s” in that word.  Use them.  They were put there for a reason.  Saying “di’nt” doesn’t make you sound hip, it makes you sound like you have a speech impediment.  Or are perhaps ever-so-slightly retarded.

- White people who use phrases like “I’m down wit it.”  Guys, gals, come on.  If you’re melanin challenged, then leave it alone. It’s not for you.

- And lastly – Dudes.  Pull. Up. Your. PANTS!  As mentioned above, it does not make you look hip, or cool, or “down”, or street.  It makes you look developmentally disabled.  Or worse – just plain stupid.  It doesn’t proclaim your individuality, it proclaims that you are unable to perform such basic functions as dressing yourself in the morning.   Walking around with your boxers bunched up  in your crotch, with a belt riding mid-thigh as you constantly hitch your pants up an walk with that lurching, shuffling gate doesn’t say “cool,” it says “I’m a walk-away from some institution.  Please call the number on my red aluminum bracelet.”

Found this quote over at Carin’s place:

 it is wrong to give them (ed. – that would be YOU) unilateral power to decide whether their taxpayer-subsidized donations should go to, say, well-heeled operas or lavish care of pets rather than to organizations that meet more pressing communal needs (my emphasis)

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is Liberal Political Theology in a nutshell.  It is WRONG to allow wage earners to be the sole determiners of how their income is spent, because at some point, some where, they utilized a government funded resource or utility in the earning of it, and thus they “owe” that “taxpayer-subsidized” money back to….someone.

And since you can’t be trusted to spend that money wisely, you know, like buying a pedicure for Fifi instead of shoes for a homeless guy, it is the responsibility, nay, the OBLIGATION of the government to step in and make those kinds of sticky decisions for you.

Because, you know, the Government is so much wiser, so much more altruistic, and so much more caring than you are.  Just remember that the next time you are waiting in line at the DMV.

This is the mindset against which we struggle:  That people can’t and shouldn’t be trusted with how to spend their own money, because they will inevitably make the “wrong” decisions, and so the more of that money that the Government takes, then the better off everyone will be.  Until, one glorious and liberating day, every freakin’ cent you make goes right into the government coffers to be wisely and graciously distributed as handled by the benificent Higher Beings knows as “Politicians” and “Civil Service Workers.”  You know, the ones running the Post Office and the IRS.  Can’t you just see the clouds parting and the light shining down now?  What a utopia, no?

You know what happens when you arbitrarily decide that as long as there are poor people, then discretionary spending on things like pedicures or facials, or latte’s or pinstriping on your car or a new TV in the game room is “irresponsible?” 

Pretty soon the pet salon and the latte stand and the electonics store and the auto detailing shop GO OUT OF #$%@&* BUSINESS!!!!

And TADA, now you’ve got more unemployed homeless people for the government busybodies to take care of.  Do people really not understand this?

These are the people who aren’t raising more of a stink about what Obama is doing, because they agree with what he is doing and how he’s going about it.  They genuinely want our economic system to fail and be completely retooled into textbook Marxist socialism.

Stupid, meddling bastards.

UPDATE:

RightWingSparkle has the proof in the puddin’.

And Patterico.

We all seem to understand the perils of this trend.  Those that don’t, fail to do so because they want it to happen, not based on any practical understanding of the issues or long term consequences, but rather, because they are operating out of emotive idealism liberally intermixed with a dash of retribution and “revenge thinking” promoted by the vocal, hard-left Alinsky-ites who seem to get most of the press time in this country lately.  The “hate the rich” meme that has become the social buzz, even among the Lefty rich!  Bizzarro world.