Wednesday, June 27, 2007

The Light Shines a Little Brighter

Was listening to my 8 year old daughter read the story of Noah's Ark with my in one of those "Bible Stories for Children" books. When she got to the part where it becomes clear that God is going to drown hundreds of thousands of people and billions of animals, she wrinkles her nose up in an "Eew!" expression.

What a delightful age!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Easy to Forget

From a Eugene Robinson Washington Post piece:
One revelation that comes with spending time with politicians is that they actually have core beliefs. To cite one example, John Edwards may be a multimillionaire, but I can't doubt his sincerity when he talks about poverty. I've seen him volunteer in a soup kitchen without first summoning the television cameras. He grew up poor, and the experience has never left him.
I know, "Isn't that just precious!" He cites Democratic candidates in soup kitchens but I am sure there are hearts lurking in the chests of some Republicans as well. That's not to say that there are not sociopathic manipulators drawn to politics. What's more, core beliefs are matched with the temperament that will act on those beliefs. Just because George Bush sincerely believes that America can only be made safe through obsessive attempts at appearing "strong" doesn't mean it is best for our country to get involved in a land war in Asia. Draw your own conclusions about Hillary.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Psychic Bullsh*t

Check out the "amazing" performance of Rosemary Altea.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Enemies, Foreign and Domestic.

From Vice President Cheney's statement concerning the I Lewis Libby sentencing.:
I have always considered him to be ... a man fully committed to protecting the vital security interests of the United States and its citizens.

Notice there is no mention of upholding and protecting the laws or Constitution of the United States.

See also Cheney's weird paraphrase of the Oath taken by military officers:
On your first day of Army life, each one of you raised your right hand and took an oath. And you will swear again today to defend the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic. That is your vow, that is the business you're in. [emphasis added]
No, Dick, they pledge to "defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic". I am beginning to think that you might be one of the later.

Finally, The Truth About Creation!

Three engineering students were arguing about who designed the human body. One insisted that the human body must have been designed by an Electrical Engineer because of the perfection of the nerves and synapses. Another disagreed, and exclaimed that it had to have been a Mechanical Engineer: “The system of levers and pulleys is ingenious.” “No,” the third student said, “you’re both wrong. The human body was designed by a Civil Engineer. Who else but a Civil Engineer would have put a toxic waste line through a recreation area?”

Thanks to Michael Shermer who claims to have picked it up from A Prairie Home Companion

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

I had no idea

Surprising, considering the rhetoric:

Of the 1.6 million abortions performed in the U.S. each year, 91 percent are performed during the first trimester (12 or fewer weeks’ gestation); 9 percent are performed in the second trimester (24 or fewer weeks’ gestation); and only about 100 are performed in the third trimester (more than 24 weeks’ gestation), approximately .01 percent of all abortions performed. (source) [emphasis added]
Update: After discussing this with my wife, it occurred to me that this probably about the number one would expect of medically necessary abortions in a country of 250 million or so.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Have your Godwin Card Ready

Recent reports are that Vice President Cheney is planning a behind-the-scenes coup to undermine President Bush's decision to employ diplomacy in dealing with Iran. Considered along side this review of Vietnam revisionism, suggests to me a slender thread connecting post-WWI Germany and modern day neoconservatives like Mr Cheney.

Play your Godwin's Law card here!

It's as if the need to avenge the loss of the previous war forces emerging leaders to view every situation as an opportunity to find redemption. One is left to wonder if a later successful application of total war purges these men and women of the need to prove themselves so that the can mellow in their old age.

In any case, I am becoming convinced that National Humiliation is too often left out of consideration when examining the consequences and reactions to foreign policy.