It appears that I am supposed to care that at this very moment, two extremely rich people noted for not much of anything other than being extremely rich and born into hereditary privilege, are getting married.
I have yet to talk to anyone even remotely interested, yet our media is tripping over itself to cover the event.
An old colleague of mine from my college days is participating in The American Cancer Society's Relay For Life in memory of his long time partner, who died last year. If you would like to contribute, please click this link to help out a worthy cause and to support a pretty cool guy.
I found five more morels today, and I wasn't even looking for them! With all the rain we've had, coupled with the fact that I've found over a dozen morels so far without even trying, I suspect that this is going to be a VERY good year for mushrooms. Now having typed that, I probably wont find another morel this year!
Perhaps this is just the logical endpoint of two years spent arguing over what Barack Obama is — or isn’t. Muslim. Socialist. Marxist. Anti-colonialist. Racial healer. We’ve obsessed over every answer except the right one: President Obama, if you look closely at his positions, is a moderate Republican from the early 1990s. And the Republican Party he’s facing has abandoned many of its best ideas in its effort to oppose him.
What were once Republican ideas are now "Marxist."
According to Peterson, chair of the House Judiciary Committee, there are at least two prosecutable offenses—felonies punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $50,000 fine. One is the "recruitment" of non-gays. "Homosexuals can't go out into the heterosexual community and try to recruit people, or try to enlist them in homosexual acts," Peterson says. He provides an example: "'Here, young man, your hormones are raging. Let's go in this bedroom, and we'll engage in some homosexual acts. You'll find you like it.'" Peterson hasn't actually seen this happen, he says, because "I don't associate with that group of people at all... I've associated with mainstream people all my life."
The other offense, in Peterson's legal opinion, is the public display of homosexuality, since he believes the Supreme Court's decision only applies to private acts behind closed doors. Being gay in public, he says, is a wholly different matter:
"In my mind, if they were engaging in acts in public that could be construed as homosexual, it would violate that statute. It has to be more than affection. It has to be overt homosexual acts of some kind or another... If kissing goes to that extent, yes. If it's more than that, yes."
Recruitment? Do they have offices where people can sign up to "be teh gay?" I've known gay people for nearly all my life, and I've never known any of them to "recruit" anybody. I think that Mr. Peterson doth protest too much....it seems that those who are the most homophobic are also those who are deeply in the closet.
This one is "convicted criminal."Barry Bonds was convicted of obstruction of justice Wednesday but a jury failed to reach a verdict on three other counts that the home run king lied to a grand jury when he denied knowingly using steroids and human growth hormone.
Hmmmm.....it appears that the Avonworth Municiple Authority approved gas drilling in my local park. This, after a single driller issued what amounted to a "take-it-or-leave-it-you-have-one-day-to-decide ultimatum. Now as far as I'm concerned, the proper response to an ultimatum is "bite me." Personally, I don't think that drilling in a fairly small community park is a good idea, but it merits study. The land and the gas aren't going anywhere. If gas extraction can be done safely, without adverse effects on the park, the stream that runs through it, and the neighbors, it might be a good idea. If however, we wind up with a gas well in the middle of the outfield, a polluted creek, and declining property values, its probably not a wise use of a community resource. There are questions as well. Will the gas be stored on site, for truck pickup? Will a pipeline be constructed to take the gas to a collection site? How many wells are we talking about? What kind of royalties can the taxpayers expect? How will the governor's gas friendly policies impact the municipalties' efforts to get the best possible deal? Guess I'll be at my borough council meeting tonight, urging rejection of this plan until further study can be done. UPDATE: Well, went to the council meeting, said my piece, along with about a dozen other borough residents, and the council unanimously rejected the lease, effectively killing the proposal. I spend a lot of time on this blog ranting about national and state politics, but it really is at the local level where the individual can make a difference. I'm not trying to imply that my voice alone led council to its decision, but when a group of residents appears before their local elected officials and all are in agreement that something sounds like a bad idea, those officials have a greater tendency to listen.
Its Mississippi, but still... Americans nationwide are evenly divided over the issue of same sex marriage. But Republicans in Mississippi are divided over a wholly different wedlock issue: interracial marriage. In a PPP poll released Thursday, a 46% plurality of registered Republican voters said they thought interracial marriage was not just wrong, but that it should be illegal. 40% said interracial marriage should be legal. For comparison sake, the poll should have asked Mississippi Democrats how they feel about interracial marriage, but that question wasn't asked.
Judicial elections, especially retention elections, are usually humdrum affairs, with the incumbent usually winning easily, even if opposed. Yesterday's race in Wisconsin is too close to call, with the challenger leading by just over 200 votes in the initial tally. Wonder why?
Recommend a book. Any book.Bored of the Rings by the Harvard Lampoon. (Henry Beard and Douglas C. Kenney) And that is that! Seems to me this could be interesting for theists to do as well. Just insert your religion where it says "atheist" and have at it. I hope you enjoyed reading as much as I enjoyed typing!
On a scale of one to ten, how happy are you with life at this moment? I'd give it an 8, one can always be happier, right? I have a wonderful wife, a lovely daughter, and a job that I love. I'm living in a friendly neighborhood in one of the nicest cities I know. Life is pretty good! Not sure how that relates to atheism, I know plenty of happy religious people too. Maybe it has something to do with a perception I've seen online from many theists that atheists are unhappy people because we don't believe in gods.
U.S. Congressman Jason Altmire (PA-04) today welcomed the Obama Administration's announcement that Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and other suspected terrorists accused of attacking America on 9/11 will be tried in military courts in Guantanamo Bay. Congressman Altmire has consistently advocated for military trials for these detainees due to national security concerns.
What a goddamn chicken. And that goes for the President too. There is no reason, NONE to not try these defendants in a civilian court. Little Timmy McVeigh was tried, convicted, sentenced, and executed by the civilian system, and he had a heck of a lot of domestic support through the white supremacist and Christian Identity movements. No one hid under the bed. But for some reason, the jihadist boogyman turns otherwise rational people into cowering imbeciles.
Republicans spent much of the last congressional campaign scaring seniors that the Democrats were going to institute billions of dollars in Medicare cuts. Now that they're in power in the House? Republicans are backing legislation to eliminate Medicare.
Would you ever date/marry someone who follows a religion? Yes. My wife is Presbyterian and goes to church most every Sunday. I did get "dumped" if you will, by a girl I briefly dated after college because of religion. She was a Pentecostal, and after a couple of dates, she asked me to go to chuch with her. I'm a curious fellow, so I agreed. After the service, which I found to be quite bizarre, she asked me what I thought of it. I was diplomatic, and said, "It was nice, but its not for me." She refused to talk to me after that. Perhaps she did like me, but I suspect all she really wanted to do was convert me, and when she saw that wasn't happening, decided to move on. Oh well.
I don't know what's gotten into Blogger, but it seems I'm no longer able to put in paragraph breaks. In my opinion, this makes the site much harder to read. Perhaps another service is in my future? Any suggestions?
What happens when you go off the conservative script.Just a few weeks ago Anthony Watts, who runs a prominent climate denialist Web site, praised the Berkeley project and piously declared himself “prepared to accept whatever result they produce, even if it proves my premise wrong.” But never mind: once he knew that Professor Muller was going to present those preliminary results, Mr. Watts dismissed the hearing as “post normal science political theater.” And one of the regular contributors on his site dismissed Professor Muller as “a man driven by a very serious agenda.” Of course, it’s actually the climate deniers who have the agenda, and nobody who’s been following this discussion believed for a moment that they would accept a result confirming global warming. But it’s worth stepping back for a moment and thinking not just about the science here, but about the morality. For years now, large numbers of prominent scientists have been warning, with increasing urgency, that if we continue with business as usual, the results will be very bad, perhaps catastrophic. They could be wrong. But if you’re going to assert that they are in fact wrong, you have a moral responsibility to approach the topic with high seriousness and an open mind. After all, if the scientists are right, you’ll be doing a great deal of damage. But what we had, instead of high seriousness, was a farce: a supposedly crucial hearing stacked with people who had no business being there and instant ostracism for a climate skeptic who was actually willing to change his mind in the face of evidence. As I said, no surprise: as Upton Sinclair pointed out long ago, it’s difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on his not understanding it. I'm paraphrasing here, but I recently read somewhere that the Republicans deny basic science for political reasons. AS its been said before, you are entitled to your own opinions, but you are not entitled to your own facts.
What happens when we die? Do you fear death? We decompose. Fear is, I think a bit strong. The thought of going from "being" to "not being" is hard to wrap my mind around. I'm sure nearly everyone would like there to be "something more" or to have an eternal life, but I just don't see any evidence for it. I suspect that when its time for me, I'll find being dead to be a lot like it was before I was born.
Do you plan on having a career in the sciences. Which branch of science intrigues you the most? Ahh, here's something interesting! I would have loved to go into a science career. Unfortunatly, my math skills are horrendous. That said, I'm probably one of the better read science laypersons around. I like astronomy, geology, vulcanology, archeology, geography, physics, climatology, and anthropology. I'm not too keen on biology or chemistry, except on how they pertain to the things I'm interested in, like evolution or fungi. I probably left out a bunch of stuff, I really, really like science, but those are the things I enjoy most.
Are you spiritual, or are your feet always on the ground? What a silly question. I'm not "spiritual" and while I try to stay grounded in reality, that doesn't mean I'm immune to flights of fancy. I'm getting a bit dissappointed in some of these latter queries, maybe I should have read the list thouroughly first, and culled some of the more inane questions.